Maharashtra CM Uddhav meets leading business leaders

Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has assured industry captains that he would do “whatever it takes” to make Maharashtra the No. 1 destination in the country for industrial growth.

The CM had called for a meeting with leading business leaders at the government’s official guesthouse, Sahyadri, at Malabar Hill with the aim of improving industrial growth, generating job opportunities and making Maharashtra a $1-trillion economy by 2025. The meeting lasted nearly two hours.

Tata Group’s Chairman Emeritus Ratan Tata, Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani, Godrej Group Chairman Adi Godrej, Mahindra & Mahindra Chairman Anand Mahindra, RPG Group Chairman Harsh Goenka, Kotak Group’s Uday Kotak, HDFC Chairman Deepak Parekh, Bharat Forge’s Baba Kalyani, Ashok and Gopichand Hinduja of the Hinduja Group, Co-Founder and MD of Hiranandani Group Niranjan Hiranandani, Raymond Group Chairman and Managing Director Gautam Singhania, and JSW Group’s Sajjan Jindal were among 20 who attended it.

Addressing the participants, Adi Godrej spoke about the need to lend a helping hand to the real estate industry, which has been hit by an economic slowdown. He asked the government to ensure that policies are not changed frequently.

Gautam Singhania said focused on the textile industry and asked the government to provide jobs for the youth in this sector and design policies that are conducive to its growth.

Baba Kalyani asked for lowering of power tariffs for the industrial sector, pointing out that it is the highest in the country.

Anil Ambani pushed for promotion of digitisation and skill-based education, which he said would fill manpower shortage in the sector.

Deepak Parekh asked for expediting infrastructure projects and a single window clearance system for affordable housing.

Thackeray assured them that the government would create such an industry-friendly environment in the state—by providing world-class infrastructure and other facilities—that the thought of investing outside the state would never cross their minds. He also appealed to business leaders who have set up industrial units outside Maharashtra to bring them home.

In a statement, Gopichand Hinduja, co-chairman of Hinduja Group, and Ashok Hinduja, chairman, Hinduja Group of Companies, said the meeting laid out the vision and the roadmap for a $1-trillion economy. “His (Thackeray) blueprint had a clear emphasis on building more industrial units, upgrading health and education facilities, and boosting tourism to create more jobs, coupled with policy-friendly governance to increase the ease of doing business.”

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