The Left government in Kerala has drawn flak for rolling out red carpet for corporates by compromising the rights of the panchayats and local body institutions.

 

A few days after the state government decided to bundle out crucial rights of panchayats including the power decide on the no objection certificate (NOC), the Congress seems to have woke up to the gravity of the seemingly harmless 'efforts to  facilitate investment.' Environmentalists have also cried foul.
 

Also read: Left govt. set to usurp powers of local bodies to woo investors
 

There are allegations that the government is moving ahead with the law amendments without taking the partners in the Left Democratic Front (LDF) into confidence.

 

Congress leader VM Sudheeran slammed the Pinarayi Vijayan government for being subservient to corporates and vested interests.

 

  Industries Minister AC Moitheen , however, said that the move was indented to make it easier for upcoming industries and to reduce red-tape. The government was always ready for discussions, he clarified. "We are planning to make Kerala industries-friendly. The environmentalists need not worry about this," Moitheen told Asianet News.

 

Janata Dal leader K Krishnan Kutty also crticised the government for not discussing the amendments in the LDF. 

 

The cabinet meet decided on last Wednesday to bring 11 amendments to the existing laws to facilitate investment and to reduce hassles in starting business ventures.  It decided to bring in Kerala Investment Promotion and Facilitation Act which would also mean that the panchayats in the state would lose their power to control industries. To facilitate the new act, the government will have to bring amendments to various existing laws including Kerala Panchayat Act, Kerala Municipality Act, Building rules, Kerala Lift and Escalators Act, Value-Added Tax Act, Water Resource Regulation Act and Kerala Factories Rules. As per the unified act,  prior permission would not be necessary for launching new industries that fall under 'green' and 'white' category.