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Thriving industry

Print edition : Feb 27, 2009 T+T-
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State Minister for Major Industries J. Geetha Reddy at the Sparsha Pharma factory in Toopran after she inaugurated it on February 1.-MOHD ARIF

IN recent years, Andhra Pradeshs Medak district has been witnessing a spurt in industrial activity. Though it may take time for these industrial projects to yield results, their completion is sure to change the face of the district by creating large employment potential.

Medak district, not far from Hyderabad, has two national highways NH-9 leading to Mumbai and NH-7 to New Delhi passing through it side by side. The district has several features that prospective investors find advantageous; for instance, the easy availability of land. The pressure on land for real estate development and the heavy demand from the software industry have made the cost of land prohibitive in the neighbouring Rangareddy district. As a result, industry is looking at Medak as an affordable alternative.

Senior executives from Tata Motors visited Wargal area in the district in the fourth quarter of 2008 to examine the feasibility of establishing its small car factory there. Although they zeroed in on a site in Gujarat, their search for a site in Medak is a testimony to the districts investment potential.

The Andhra Pradesh Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (APIIC) is developing a 750-acre area at Mupireddypally village, which is adjacent to the Hyderabad-Ramagundam State Highway called the Rajiv Rahadari, for the establishment of industries. Already 50 acres in this area has been allotted to 39 industries. Internal roads are being laid at an estimated cost of Rs.15 crore and Rs.6 crore is allocated for water supply.

This area is expected to attract an investment of Rs.1,500 crore and generate about 14,000 jobs. Each farmer was paid Rs.5 lakh for an acre, in addition to alternative sites for housing. The APIIC earmarked 50 acres of land to construct houses for the displaced farmers. According to J. Geetha Reddy, Minister for Major Industries, Rs.50 crore has been paid in all as compensation to the farmers.

On February 1, Geetha Reddy inaugurated the factory of Sparsha Pharma International Private Limited, which will develop and manufacture transdermal patches with different formulations and market them at affordable prices. Patients suffering from chronic pains caused by diseases such as cancer and rheumatoid arthritis are the target group. The indigenous manufacture of these products will reduce costs, since these patches are presently imported, Dange Veerapaneni, managing director, Sparsha Pharma said.

Similarly, Shantha Biotechnics, a pioneering bio-technology company, is setting up a vaccination complex here. This facility, spread over a 40-acre area (one acre is 0.4 hectare), will be operational by June 2011. It will have the capacity to manufacture over 100 million doses of vaccines annually.

The company plans to invest Rs.50 crore initially and increase it to Rs.100 crore later. The vaccine complex will address the capacity constraints of our existing facilities that manufacture a range of enteric vaccines and the new generation pneumococcal vaccines, which are under development. Shantha Biotech has obtained the World Health Organisation pre-qualification for its pentavalent vaccine this year and has started supplying the vaccine to the United Nations Childrens Fund, said Varaprasad Reddy, the managing director.

The stage is also set for the establishment of the first car factory in the State with the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between the State government and MLR Motors Limited.

The factory, with a proposed investment of Rs.1,250 crore, will produce light commercial vehicles, small cars and three wheelers. It is expected to provide 5,000 jobs. Under the Special Project category, the State government has launched the Phase-III of a biotech park in Genome Valley at Karkapatla village in Mulugu mandal. It will have an area of 414 acres. Seventy-five acres of land has been allotted in the park for the establishment of a world-class Institute of Translation Research (ITR).

The ITR will help physicians in the management of diseases such as flourosis by facilitating early and accurate diagnosis, besides designing methods of stem cell and gene therapy.

MRF Limited is investing about Rs.150 crore for the production of tyres, tubes and flaps; it plans to recruit 500 more workers.

In the large and medium sectors, about 25 units with a proposed investment of Rs.1,905 crore are coming up. This is in addition to 268 tiny and small industries with an estimated investment of Rs.257 crore. Both these sectors are expected to provide employment to around 17,000 people. During the last four years, 36 large and medium-scale units were established in the district with an investment of Rs.582.09 crore. These provided employment to about 4,800 people. However, it was much higher in the tiny and small-scale industries (SSI) units; at a modest investment of Rs.103.39 crore, they provided employment to around 21,000 people.

Medak has secured a permanent place in the industrial map of India with the setting up of major public-sector undertakings such as Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (at Ramachandrapuram), Bharat Dynamics Limited, Indian Ordnance Factory and Hindustan Fluoro Carbons Limited. The total investment was Rs.1,323.48 crore and they provide employment to 15,335 people.

Being close to the State capital, the district has an advantage in attracting investments in industry. The fact that Geetha Reddy belongs to this district has also helped matters. We wish more industries would come to the district, said T. Harish Rao, the legislator from Siddipet.

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