R. K. Nagar (West Tripura), April 12 (ANI): The biggest gas-based steel plant in northeast India, having a capacity of 1,50,000 tonnes per annum, has started commercial production in Tripura.
The rupees 250 crores steel plant at Bodhjungnagar, 12 kilometres north of Agartala, is a new addition of the Noida-based Dharampal Premchand Ltd (DPPC), manufacturers of the "Baba" brand of tobacco products, which already had its rubber unit in the State.
R. K. Kakrania, Director of DPPC who claimed his factory to be totally automated using digital controls producing the fines products, said: "The project would not only help to tap the unexplored business potential of the northeastern region and adjacent countries but also provide employment in the state, would ensure rapid socio-economic development of the state."
"The State government here is much more responsive and friendly than any other State and now the State capital is connected by rail. We hope the Bangladesh government will see reason and soon give transit facility through Chittagong port and once that happens, this place shall be better than Calcutta (Kolkata)."
DPPC, which along with galvanized sheets shall also produced coloured sheets, also target of the growing market in Bangladesh and so already set its office in capital Dhaka.
"By June, the first consignment shall be exported to Bangladesh, hopefully, but we are aware and prepare to compete with China and Korea to enter into the Southeast Asia market", Kakrani added.
Spread over 24 acres, the plant will manufacture cold rolled sheets, galvanised corrugated and plain sheets and cold rolled closed annealed sheets needed by the roofing, automobile industry and for making cupboards, panels, grain storage bins and silos and barrels. . K. Sarkar, production controller, said, "There shall be four types of products in this factory which are of the finest uniform quality using the latest digital controlled machines."
"We are not only taking care of our products and the socio economic development of the State but we are also taking care that the wastage of the factory is not harmful and polluting. So we have a recycling plant in our factory", Sarkar added.
DPPC, which started its journey back in 1929, has grown into a Rs 250-crore company. It has employed 300 youngsters after providing them special training.
Rajesh Debbarma, one of such youngsters, is earning Rs.2,400 per month, he says: "I was unemployed till a few days back but with the setting of the factory many more like me got employment here. Moreover, the local people are now getting tin sheets for roofing from the factory at low price because earlier this use to come from outside the State."
State-owned upstream oil major Oil and Natural Gas Corp is supplying gas to the steel plant.
Kakrania informed, apart from steel, DPL has already commenced work to set up a ceramic tiles unit in Guwahati. The project is expected to start production by April 2010. By Pinaki Das (ANI)