Oppn slams Modi govt on reports of Adani employee on Centre’s panel

New Delhi: Opposition parties on Tuesday attacked the Modi government for “appointing” Janardhan Chaudhary as a member of the Centre’s Expert Appraisal Committees (EAC) under the Environment Ministry, alleging he is an employee of the Adani group.

Chaudhary was appointed in September to the all-important panel, which has to clear several power projects, including some of the Adani Group, according to media reports.

“Adani Pradhan Sevak appointed Adani employee Janardhan Choudhury as a
member of EAC under Environment Ministry. This committee has to approve 6 Adani projects (10,300 MW),” the Kerala Congress claimed on its official X account.

It also said that recently Adani’s 1500 MW Satara plant was approved by him.

“Eej of doing bujiness,” the party said.

Reports claimed that a key advisor to Adani Green Energy Limited (AGEL)Chaudhary, is now a member of one of the Centre’s Expert Appraisal Committees (EAC) before which the company’s hydro project proposals come up for clearance.

The EAC discusses and decides on projects that require prior government approval.

On September 27, the Union Environment Ministry named Chaudhary as one of the seven non-institutional members when it reconstituted the EAC for hydroelectricity and river valley projects, the report claimed.

Shiv Sena (UBT) leader and Rajya Sabha MP Priyanka Chaturvedi said on X, “AGEL projects before the EAC include: 850 mw Raiwada, Andhra Pradesh, 1800 mw Pedakota Andhra Pradesh, 2100 mw Patgaon, Maharashtra , 2,450 mw Koyna-Nivakane, Maharashtra, 1500 mw Malshej Ghat Bhorande, Maharashtra, 1500 mw Tarali, Maharashtra (approved by EAC on 17th Oct 2023).”

She claimed the company has plans to develop another 3.7 giga watt of pumped storage – 1,200 mw Kurukutti, 1,000 mw Karrivalasa, 1,000 mw in Gandi-kota and 500 mw Chitravathi – with an investment of Rs 15,740 crore in Andhra Pradesh.

“What does EAC chair think about conflict of interest? Who are the other
members of EAC? Only one of them also happens to be a private company advisor and surprise surprise from AGEL,” she said.

“Dosti ho toh aisi na?” she said in her post.

TMC MP Mahua Moitra, who faces expulsion from the Lok Sabha after the Ethics
Committee has recommended it, said, “Modiji’s Ministry of Environment appointed Adani employee Janardhan Choudhury as member of EAC – 6 Adani projects totalling 10300mw up for appraisal by this @moefcc committee”.

Moitra claimed the last meeting saw 1500mw AGEL Satara plant approved by him.

Press Trust of India (PTI) is India’s premier news agency, having a reach as vast as the Indian Railways. It employs more than 400 journalists and 500 stringers to cover almost every district and small town in India.

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