Few British takers for investment in Haryana
Monday, 18 November 2002, 08:00 Hrs
LONDON: Haryana Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala has made little headway in securing investment for his state on his third visit to London in as many months. Chautala's officials have declared agreements made, but there is little yet on the ground. Chautala addressed a meeting of the Haryana Association of Britain Sunday to ask Punjabis and Haryanvis once again to invest in Haryana. Chautala was last in London a month ago, and then two months earlier. Meetings with the Hinduja brothers have been high on his priorities in all visits. The Hinduja brothers signed five memorandums of understanding during the last visit for what officials said would be major new investments in Haryana. But as with many announcements made by the Hindujas, announcements have not been followed by projects on the ground. The five agreements were signed after a series of meetings between the Hinduja brothers and a team from Haryana led by Chautala. They included the setting up of a state of the art hospital, a knowledge centre linked to the hospital, export of agricultural produce from Haryana, and infrastructure projects covering power, roads, irrigation and other areas. But with the announcement now that the Hinduja brothers will face prosecution in India for their involvement in the 640-million Bofors arms kickbacks case, none of these projects are expected to go ahead in the near future. An official said that Chautala is also discussing a large number of investment proposals with groups. Officials said this visit is not the last, and Chautala is expected back soon.