KTR holds talks with Kitex Group to discuss Rs. 3,500 crore investment

A delegation from Kitex Group, headed by its chairman and managing director Sabu M. Jacob, met Telangana minister for industries K.T Rama Rao in Hyderabad on Friday.

By Newsmeter Network  Published on  9 July 2021 2:25 PM GMT
KTR holds talks with Kitex Group to discuss Rs. 3,500 crore investment

Hyderabad: A delegation from Kitex Group, headed by its chairman and managing director Sabu M. Jacob, met Telangana minister for industries K.T Rama Rao in Hyderabad on Friday.

Kitex Garments Limited was recently embroiled in a controversy after it withdrew plans to invest Rs. 3,500 crore in Kerala. The Telangana government had extended an invitation to the company to set up an apparels unit in the state.

Kitex officials arrived in Hyderabad on 9 July to discuss the Rs. 3,500 crore project that it withdrew in Kerala. During the meeting, KTR gave an overview of the progressive industrial policies of Telangana and highlighted the availability of required resources for the textiles sector.

Principal secretary (industries) Jayesh Ranjan, commissioner of handlooms and textiles Shailaja Ramaiyer, Telangana State Industrial Infrastructure Corporation Ltd. (TSIICL) MD Narsimha Reddy, and senior officials from the industries department attended the meeting.

Mr. Jacob and a five-member team reached Hyderabad by a special flight sent by the Telangana government. Before arriving in the city, Mr. Jacob had said they had already had one round of discussions with the Telangana minister who had offered them all the support.

A brief history of Kitex Garments

Kitex Garments is the flagship company of the Rs. 1,200 crore Anna-Kitex Group founded by M.C Jacob at Kizhakkambalam in Kochi in 1968. The Kitex Group employs 15,000 people and is currently the world's second-largest producer of children's apparel. It is now in the process of setting up operations in the US.

Kitex Garments Limited is the largest employer in the private sector in Kerala. It is located near Kochi and was established in 1992. It employs 11,000 workers, a majority of whom are from other states.

The chairman of Kitex Garments Ltd, Sabu Jacob, floated Twenty20 in 2013 as a non-profit entity for the betterment of Kizhakkambalam panchayath where the company headquarters is situated. Opposition from political parties compelled Twenty20 to contest the local body elections in 2015. It won 17 of the 19 seats in the Kizhakkambalam panchayat and retained power in the 2020 local body elections in these panchayats.

Controversy in Kerala

At the 'Ascend Kerala' global investor meeting organized by the Kerala government in Kochi in January 2020, Kitex Garments proposed to invest Rs. 3,500 crore to establish an apparel park and three industrial parks in Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram, and Palakkad. The proposed project was expected to generate 35,000 jobs.

But the managing director and chairman of Kitex Group, Sabu M. Jacob, had alleged that frequent inspections and raids by Kerala government officials had disrupted the company's functioning. After that, he withdrew plans to invest Rs. 3,500 crore to build apparel and industrial parks in Kerala.

Meanwhile, Kerala industries minister P. Rajeev said all inquiries into Kitex Garments were carried out only in response to complaints filed against the company.

Kitex takes the Telangana route

The Telangana government has extended an invitation to Kitex Garments to set up an apparels unit in the state. A communication from the Kitex Group said Telangana industries minister K.T Rama Rao sent an invitation to the company on Tuesday evening promising attractive incentives under the Telangana Textiles and Apparels Policy.

Other states, like Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, has also made attractive offers to Kitex. The company's chairman has claimed that nine states have contacted him asking him to invest in their projects and put forward attractive offers.

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