A demand to provide viability gap funding for a petrochemical project at Kakinada in Andhra Pradesh was made in Rajya Sabha on Monday. Raising the issue through a Zero Hour mention, K V P Ramachandra Rao of the Congress said a petrochemical project was promised as part of the Andhra Pradesh Reorganisation Act.
The government of Andhra Pradesh, Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL) and gas utility GAIL India Ltd had signed a MoU to do a feasibility study, he said, adding the cost of the project came to Rs 329.01 billion.
"However, PSUs are of the opinion that viability gap funding is needed for the project," he said, adding the Union Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas has stated that the state government should provide capital from its own resources. He said Andhra Pradesh lost is financial base after its bifurcation and has become a revenue deficit state.
Special category has been denied to the state and it is now facing fund crunch for development work, he said, adding the state government is finding it difficult to provide viability gap funding for the petrochemical project. He demanded that the central government should provide the funds for the petrochemical project or the PSUs should finance it.
V Vijayasai Reddy of the YSR-Congress raised the issue of setting up of a port at Ramayapatnam in Andhra Pradesh. He said the state government has identified 3000 acres of land for the port and is of the opinion that the project should be constructed by the state government but funded by the central government.
Sasmit Patra (BJD) said the government should take note of rising sea levels and prepare a contingency plan for the country's three missile and satellite launch sites at Balasore in Odisha, Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh and Thumba, Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala.
Tiruchi Siva of the DMK raised the issue of OBCs being denied quota in post graduate medical courses in state government colleges after the recent National Board of Examination notice said that 27 per cent reservation for OBCs will apply only in central government colleges. "It will be serious blow to reservation," he said, demanding that OBCs should not be deprived of their due in state government collects.
Harnath Singh Yadav (BJP) demanded an Ahir regiment in the Army as a fitting tribute to the valour of the community and their contribution to various wars India has had with neighbouring countries.