Sabu Jacob, a Kerala businessman who has accused the Kerala government of harassing his company and ‘kicking them out of the state,’ flew to Telangana on July 9 and met with Industries Minister KT Rama Rao. Sabu Jacob, the Kitex group’s Managing Director, claimed that he was withdrawing a proposed Rs 3,500 crore plant in Kerala due to pressure from authorities. On the afternoon of July 9, Sabu Jacob traveled to Hyderabad in a private plane supplied by the Telangana government. He met KTR in Hyderabad, and according to sources, the meeting lasted three hours. During the discussion, KTR educated the Kitex team on the benefits of investing in the state and what the entire state had to offer Kitex. Kitex’s requirements were also discussed during the discussion.
According to the source, Kitex officials were “impressed” with the pitch and promptly flew to the Kakatiya Mega Textile Park (KMTP) in the Warangal district. The team was flown from Hyderabad to Warangal in a chopper. EV Narasimha Reddy, Vice-Chairperson of the Telangana State Industrial Infrastructure Corporation, joined the delegation to Warangal to see the park. On July 10, the team will hold another round of discussions with KTR in Hyderabad.
“The answer appears to be positive. We also discussed the relaxations in Telangana regarding inspections and other issues. The Telangana practice of clearing letters filed by industrial units to eliminate inspections was highlighted in the discussion, which impressed the team “, according to a source. Telangana, on the other hand, left it up to Kitex to choose the incentives, based on which an ‘adapted and bespoke scheme will be devised for Kitex.
Sabu claimed, before boarding the private flight to Hyderabad, that Kerala was 50 years behind in terms of jobs and industry. “I never imagined I’d leave Kerala.” But how long can a person endure all of the abuse and torture? It was my father’s goal to provide jobs for thousands of Keralites. I’m not leaving of my own free will, but I’ve been forced to leave, tossed out,” he explained.
Kitex Garments is the world’s second-largest manufacturer of children’s clothing. Sabu announced its withdrawal from the Rs 3,500 crore project for which it had signed a memorandum of understanding with the Kerala government at the Ascend Global Investors Meet in Kochi in 2020. He claimed that a series of inspections were conducted in order to scrap the project. He further stated that the Kerala government does not provide any subsidies, even those for electricity. According to a statement from the Kitex group on July 8, the Telangana government has given an invitation to Kitex Garments to establish an apparels unit in the state.
The Kerala Industries Minister, on the other hand, answered that the inspections at the industrial facility were carried out in response to complaints filed with the National Human Rights Commission and the High Court. Sabu Jacob founded the ‘Twenty-20’ political party and seized control of the Kizhakkambalam panchayat in Ernakulam district. However, in the state Assembly elections held in April of this year, the organization suffered a setback by failing to gain even a single seat despite being contested in six seats.