By Sohini Das
As Hero MotoCorp, the country's largest two-wheeler maker, continues to face problems at its Gurgaon facility, the company has, meanwhile, expedited the land acquisition process at its proposed plant in Halol, Gujarat. According to industry sources, Hero is in the last leg of taking possession of land at its site, and is expected to start work on the plant within the next three to four months.
A senior state government official informed that the Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation (GIDC) has acquired land for the project (around 200 odd acres) and the land has already been allotted to the company, which is in the process of taking possession of the land.
Around 135 acres was allotted last year, and the company had also made payment for the same. The remaining land parcel is also ready, informed the official, and Hero is in process of taking possession. He added that work on the plant is expected to begin within the next three to four months. The plant is expected to be operational by 2014-15 fiscal.
A company spokesperson from Hero MotoCorp said, "We have been allotted part of the land for which payment has already been made. We are awaiting for the allotment of the remaining parcel of land, post which we plan to start work on the project."
Hero is investing close to Rs 1,100 crore to set up a 1.2 million units per annum plant at Halol, near Vadodara. The company has been allotted land at the GIDC Halol Extension II, and the proposed plant site is close to the General Motors plant at Halol.
Kirit Thakkar, president of the Halol GIDC Industries Association, informed that GIDC has already acquired around 800 hectares for developing the industrial estate. "Tenders for road construction and water connectivity from the Narmada canal have already been floated, and work on developing the infrastructure in the estate will start soon," he added.
Hero has three plants at Dharuhera, Gurgaon and Haridwar and has started work on its fourth plant at Neemrana in Rajasthan. Halol would be the company's fifth facility.
The workers at the company's Gurgaon unit, who are demanding a wage hike, have announced to slow down work at the plant in mid-January.