ArcelorMittal, Nippon Steel acquires Essar, challenge on security remains in Chhattisgarh

The Essar had even to confront the allegation regarding its role in giving cash to Maoists to safeguard its business operations.

Published: 17th December 2019 05:40 PM  |   Last Updated: 17th December 2019 05:40 PM   |  A+A-

Essar Steel

Essar Steel. (File Photo | Reuters)

By Express News Service

RAIPUR: On Monday the ArcelorMittal and Nippon Steel, that came together as a joint venture, announced on having accomplished the acquisition of Essar Steel India Limited (ESIL). The ESIL  operated the second-longest (267 km) pipeline in the world to transport high-quality iron ore to Vishakhapatnam through one of the worst Maoist-affected districts of Dantewada in south Chhattisgarh.

Besides the effective maintenance, the key challenge on the security remains for the slurry pipeline, as the large segment of the conduit falls in the stronghold area of the outlawed CPI (Maoist).

Bailadila in Dantewada has some finest iron ore reserves in the world. Essar carried the extracted high ore used in the process of making steel. The ores are initially treated before being transported through the slurry pipelines that proceed via Odisha state from strife-torn Dantewada and passes through inhospitable rugged topography to reach the pellet plant at Vishakhpatnam in Andhra Pradesh.

The earlier experiences of the ESIL on ensuring the security and the cooperation from the states like Chhattisgarh, Odisha or Andhra Pradesh for its pipeline protection and repair were not quite encouraging for the company. Though it’s claimed that recently the situation owing to support from the forces have somewhat improved.

“Security has always been a major issue for Essar all these years in Dantewada as the company had to confront the obstacles owing to the Maoists who had damaged the pipelines on different instance in Dantewada. Earlier the company even had grounded its operation on transporting iron-ore from Chhattisgarh when the pipelines got damaged”, a former senior officer of the ESIL revealed.

The Essar had even to confront the allegation regarding its role in giving cash to Maoists to safeguard its business operations.

Then, it would equally be interesting to watch how the system being adopted abroad would be effectively practiced by the multinational company like ArcelorMittal and Nippon Steel in the remote toughest terrain of Chhattisgarh.

And to what extent the bureaucracy offers conducive working environment for the new MNC also remains to be seen.


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