An official statement said that Assam Industrial Development Corporation (AIDC) was the successful bidder and it took over the assets of the paper mills on behalf of the state government.
The understanding was signed by Adil Khan, the Managing Director of AIDC, Moloy Ranjan Thakur, Deputy General Manager of HPCL, and the authorized official liquidator Kuldeep Verma with state industries minister Chandra Mohan Patowary present.
A team of officials of AIDC also took over the assets of the Cachar Paper Mill at Panchgram. The state government pushed for the resolution of the matter on humanitarian grounds even as it did not have any stakes in the paper mills, the statement further said.
Notably, the Assam government has offered a general relief package of Rs 700 crores. It included the settlement of various outstanding dues of employees and workers of HPCL’s assets at both the mills.
The relief package was given approval in a cabinet meeting held in September, last year. AIDC, the nodal agency, took part in the e-auction process of all the assets, plants, technical area, township area of Nagaon and Cachar paper mills at a reserved price of Rs 375 crores.
The state government paid the amount which will be distributed by the liquidators as per the norms of the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) 2016. The remaining Rs 700 crores will be utilized to clear dues of employees and workers of HPCL.
Meanwhile, the government of Assam plans to develop the land to promote industrial and economic activities to accelerate growth in the region.
The mill at Nagaon is spread over 1765 bigha, 33 katha and 24 lessa of land while the one at Cachar occupies 2916 bigha, 1 katha and 7 lessa land, totaling to 4681 bigha, 34 katha and 17 lessa.
The Nagaon paper mill has been defunct since October 2017, while the Cachar paper mill has been non-operational since March 2015. The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) in Delhi had ordered the liquidation proceedings for non-payment of dues of financial and operational creditors.