On Friday, during a session, Belagavi South MLA Abhay Patil urged the government to bring more industries to the Belagavi district and create employment opportunities for the region’s youth.
Patil noted that the government of Karnataka had announced Beyond Bengaluru, but unfortunately, the benefits only applied to Hubballi-Dharwad and not beyond. He requested the government to initiate ‘Beyond Hubballi’ in North Karnataka so that Belagavi could benefit from some industries.
Patil further pointed out that, with the exception of Hindalco, no major investments had been made in Belagavi in the last 25 years. He also informed that the MLAs, MPs, and members of the Belagavi Chamber of Commerce and other industry associations had met with CM Basavaraj Bommai to demand necessary action for the betterment and development of Belagavi District.
Industrial bodies in the region were reportedly upset with the state government for the step-motherly treatment towards Belagavi, and they informed that Maharashtra was inviting industrialists from Belagavi to invest there, offering low-cost land and tax rebates.
The government of Goa had also invited industrialists from Belagavi, promising them single-window clearance and other facilities. In light of this, Patil requested the CM to form a special industry policy for the border district of Belagavi and create facilities to bring in automobile industries.
Minister for Major and Medium Industries Murugesh Nirani revealed during question hour that close to 90% of the Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) signed by the Karnataka government pertain to Belagavi, Hubballi, Dharwad, Kalaburagi, Mysuru and Managaluru. He further stated that priority would be given to Belagavi under the one district-one project programme.
A Gold Plus Glass, a Delhi-based company, has started its factory investing ₹2,500 crore in Kanagla. Additionally, a Russian firm that manufactures electric vehicles has come forward to invest in Karnataka, and the Minister has tried to convince them to invest in Belagavi, Dharwad or Kalaburagi, offering good incentives and facilities. The delegation had visited Belagavi to meet the Minister, and the investment is estimated to be more than ₹2,000 crore.
Belagavi, a border town, is known for its foundries, and the Minister has proposed to create an industrial area in the region due to its proximity to Maharashtra’s industrial area.
When Speaker Vishveshwara Hegde Kageri suggested offering special incentives to industries in border areas, the Minister expressed his concern that it may become an issue as border areas near Bengaluru would also seek similar concessions.