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Prime Minister urged to stop loss caused to Vizag steel plant

J Balaji

Gangavaram Port Limited is gaining at the cost of VPT, says VHR


VPT is charging handling charges, including the rail freight, at Rs.300 per tonne

For a 10-year agreement, VSP would end up paying around Rs. 400 crore


NEW DELHI: Congress Rajya Sabha member V. Hanumantha Rao from Andhra Pradesh has urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to immediately look into the matter relating to spending of over Rs.40 crore extra per year by the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant by deciding to import its raw materials from the newly-built Gangavaram Port Limited instead of the Visakhapatnam Port Trust.

In a letter to Dr. Singh, which was handed over to his office here on Wednesday, Mr. Hanumantha Rao said despite the per tonne handling charges of GPL being higher than that of VPT, the Gangavaram port had been able to get bulk cargo from the steel plant in the last two years by signing an agreement with VSP, which is a Navaratna public sector undertaking of the Central government.

While the VPT was charging the handling charges, including the rail freight at Rs.300 per tonne, the Gangavaram port, a joint venture of the Andhra Pradesh government and a private consortium, led by D.V.S. Raju, was charging at Rs. 290 per tonne, which did not include the rail freight. In a way, the steel plant was giving Rs.40 crore extra per year to the Gangavaram port for the service which it was not rendering. For a 10-year agreement, VSP would end up paying around Rs. 400 crore more to the Gangavaram port which would cause heavy loss to the exchequer. He urged the Prime Minister to take immediate remedial measures..

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