Ahead of the Gujarat elections, Rahul Gandhi and Congress have been on a constant offensive, questioning and criticising the incumbent Gujarat govt. Recently Gandhi alleged PM Modi of giving a grant of Rs 33,000 crore for the Nano plant in Sanand near Ahmedabad. He further added that despite all this, not a single Nano car can be spotted in the roads of Gujarat. Breaking its silence Tata Motors have eventually replied that they received a loan of Rs 584.8 crore and not a grant. They also mentioned that this loan is from "taxes paid by Tata Motors".
According to a report in The Indian Express, the company said, "Given the scale of the project and its potential to drive growth in the state, the Government of Gujarat offered Tata Motors an incentive package in the form of a loan (not a grant), which is to be repaid to the state government as per the loan agreement executed. The loan given to Tata Motors from the government is from taxes paid by Tata Motors. Until now, the state government has given a loan of Rs 584.8 crore to Tata Motors."
Tata Motors also claimed that since the establishment of the Sanand plant, there has been a spike in economic activity and growth in employment in the state. The plant has also been instrumental in making Gujarat one of the key auto hubs within the country with huge employment generation. The company also added that the project has also given rise to capital investments resulting in the development of incidental activities and employment generation in small and medium industries.
Gujarat government and PM Modi have been barraged by a volley of questions and criticisms by Rahul Gandhi on Twitter. He tweeted "Why the people of Gujarat should pay the price for his financial mismanagement and publicity." He then added, "My second question to Prime Minister on the state of affairs in Gujarat. In 1995, total debt on Gujarat was Rs 9,183 crore. In 2017, the total debt on Gujarat was Rs 2.41 lakh crore. That means a debt of Rs 37,000 on every Gujarati. Why should the people of Gujarat pay up the price for your financial mismanagement and publicity?"
On Wednesday, he tweeted "22 salon ka hisaab, Gujarat mange jawaab". (Gujarat wants answers for the last 22 years of calculation).
After Tata Motors' reply, Congress promptly retorted that the loan given to "poor" Tatas is at 0.01%, while the interest levied on farm loans is 18%. Congress's spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said, "Are farmers rich and Tata poor that the Gujarat government is charging high rate of interest from the farmers?"
(With agency inputs)