Bhawanipatna: People of Kalahandi district have been pushed into anxieties over several years as the industrial district witnessed closure of many industries one after the other, a report said.
According to sources, the district once known as an industrial region has got the sugar factory at Mathura under Junagarh block closed. Several people who were directly or indirectly dependent on this factory are jobless now.
This has given a blow to sugarcane farmers in the district. Moreover, spinning mill of Kesinga was also closed much before. As this district happens to be a leading producer of high-quality cotton, which is better regarded outside the state as ‘White Gold’, the closure of the mill has pushed cotton farmers to distress.
A proposed paper mill at Kesinga has not see light of the day. The land acquired for this purpose is now under the possession of encroachers. Restoration of the closed industries appears like a daydream.
It is known that, the foundation stone the of rice mill was laid a couple of months back by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. Earlier, he had laid the foundation stones for three different projects at the old sugar factory near Goudasergiguda under Junagarh block November 16, 2016, which included a 203 MW capacity biomass plant, an integrated grain based distillery and a parboil rice mill.
People were hopeful that industrialisation would bring them ample job opportunities. Over three years have passed since then and the projects have not started yet. The total estimated cost of the projects was around Rs 300 crore, locals said.
Locals have pinned hope on Junagarh MLA captain Dibya Shankar Mishra who is the Minister of State (independent charge) for energy, industries and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME).