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Minister promises measures to revive Sitaram Mills

Staff Reporter

Package for sick industries likely in coming Assembly session

THRISSUR: Industries Minister V.K. Ebrahim Kunju has promised that the Government will take steps to revive the Sitaram Textile Mills soon after getting the report of the Cabinet Sub-Committee looking into the issue.

Talking to the presspersons on Saturday, the Minister said the Government had identified couple of sick industries, which could be revived under the one-time assistance package. Sitaram Mills is one among them.

The Cabinet Sub-Committee is likely to finalise the revival package for those industries during the ensuing Assembly session itself.

Representatives of the management and trade unions appealed to the Minister to announce a modernisation package for the Mill. They said the spinning wing has the capacity of 12,000 spindles. The mill also has a capacity to process 40,000 meters of cloth every day. However, its capacity is being severely underutilised now and only 212 permanent employees and 46 temporary employees are working in the mill now.

According to the employees, modernisation of mill and enhancement of the spindle capacity to 18,000 would cost only Rs.4.82 crores. The management representatives told the Minister that

the mill was not able get the benefits of the profit it was making now because of the interest burden on the debts it is owing to the State Government.

The management, therefore, requested the Government to convert the debt of nearly Rs.4.81 crores that the company owes to the Government into shares. The management is also seeking the help of the Government to persuade the bank to resolve its loan issue through a `one-time settlement package'.

The employees demanded that the Government help the company to pay the relief to the employees who had taken voluntary retirement. The Minister said the State Government would consider these proposals favourably and would extend all possible help for the revival of this sinking mill.

The Minister said the scope of the textile sector had increased with the moves to start the units like `Fashion city' and `Apparel Park' in Kochi.

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