Maharashtra puts land purchase for Saudi Aramco refinery on hold


Maharashtra puts land purchase for Saudi Aramco refinery on hold

India’s western state of Maharashtra has put on hold the process to buy land for the country’s biggest oil refinery that state-run oil companies are building with Saudi Aramco, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavissaid, after strong opposition from farmers.

The $44 billion refinery was seen as a game changer for both parties – offering India steady fuel supplies and meeting Saudi Arabia’s need to secure regular buyers for its oil.

But thousands of farmers are refusing to surrender land, fearing it could damage a region famed for its Alphonso mangoes, vast cashew plantations and fishing hamlets that boast bountiful catches of seafood.

“The entire (land acquisition) process has been stayed. We haven’t acquired any land,” Fadnavis told state assembly on Wednesday as opposition parties and a coalition partner Shiv Sena were opposing the refinery. Read More

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