Noida company to invest Rs 100 crore in Vidarbha venture

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Nagpur, May 28 (UNI) The Noida-based IKF Green Fuel Limited will make an investment of Rs 100 crore over the next two years in its bio-diesel venture in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra.

Speaking to reporters here yesterday, the company's President (Bio Diesel) Vishal Rawat said the investment would be done to undertake Jatropha plantation, set up a bio-diesel refinery and a trans-esterification plant in the region. Bio-diesel would be extracted from Jatropha, also known as 'Ratanjot' and the company would enter into contract-farming agreement with farmers in Vidarbha for its cultivation and buy-back, he said.

The company had a target of bringing one lakh hectares of land under Jatropha plantation in Maharashtra, most of which would be in Vidarbha, Mr Rawat said. ''This is so because the economics of irrigated farming is not in favour of Jatropha. It is more beneficial for farmers in rain-fed areas like Vidarbha to go for Jatropha,'' he said. Incidentally, Jatropha is a non-edible oil crop with high drought resistance and drought tolerance characteristics that makes it suitable for Vidarbha, Mr Rawat told reporters.

The company has planned to set up a refinery with a capacity of 10,000 litres per day, in the region, within the next two years, when a sufficient quantity of raw feed will be available, he said, adding that the company already has a 3,000 litres per day capacity plant at Udaipur in Rajasthan. ''At present, we have 30,000 hectares under Jatropha plantation across 16 states in the country,'' Mr Rawat said.

IKF Green Fuels Limited is a wholly-owned subsidiary of IKF Technologies Limited, also based in Noida, and was incorporated in 2005. IKF Technologies Limited is into telecom, information technology, software development and e-governance and had a turnover of Rupees 175 crore, during 2007-2008.

Both the companies are headed by Dr R P Singh, a former scientist at the Indian Agriculture Research Institute, New Delhi.

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