Kerala CM writes to Modi to retain BPCL in public sector


Thiruvananthapuram, Oct 19 Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking that oil major Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited is retained in the public sector.

"The ongoing disinvestment programme of the Modi government has left many on the wrong foot. At BPCL there are over 30,000 employees who are permanent and on contract employment and this disinvestment will certainly affect them. Moreover in the past five years BPCL has seen massive investment," said Vijayan.

He also pointed out that as far as BPCL is concerned, the people of Kerala and the state government also have an interest.

"The Cochin refinery that's part of BPCL now, was set up by Kerala and when it was taken over by BPCL, the five per cent stake of the government continued. The Kerala government also supported the BPCL by way of tax relief to BPCL on the grounds that this was a public sector company," said Vijayan.

"Moreover, just beside the BPCL campus, the state government is all ready to set up a petrochemical park and the raw material for the proposed units in the park would be the product which would be available after the crude oil processing at the BPCL factory is done. Kerala is expecting an investment of Rs 25,000 crore in the park. All this will come to nought if BPCL is going to be disinvested," added Vijayan.

And hence in the interest of both the country and Kerala, it would be best, if the proposed plan for disinvestment at BPCL is stopped, he sai