By Priti Naik
Adani Group, India’s largest port operator is all set to mark a strike in West Bengal. The Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Limited (APSEZ) on Thursday took control of a berth at the Haldia Dock Complex (HDC), making an official entry in the state’s maritime sector.
Syama Prasad Mookerjee Port (formerly Kolkata Port Trust) which runs the Haldia Dock Complex on Thursday officially handed over the letter of award to Gautam Adani controlled Adani Ports (APSEZ) for mechanization and upgradation of Berth No. 2 at HDC. The project will see an estimated investment of 298.25 crore and likely to be operational by 2024-25. Adani Port has bagged the project by quoting a royalty share of Rs 75 per metric ton to the Calcutta Port. Once operational, the new state-of-the-art berth will have a capacity of handling 3.744 million metric ton of dry cargo annually.
The mechanized handling facility will involve unloading from ships via rail mounted Mobile Harbour Crane, conveying by conveyor system, stackers, reclaimer and loading into wagons by rapid wagon loading system with SILO. It will ensure speedy loading of dry bulk cargo into wagons through end-to-end fully mechanized solution while drastically reducing the wagon loading time, thereby leading to higher productivity.
Once functional, the new improved mechanized berth will be able to complete loading of a full rake within 2 hours, saving about 3 hours per rake. The West Bengal government has been wooing the Adanis to invest in the state ahead of the Bengal Global Business Summit due for April this year. The Adani Group does not have a large footprint in Bengal till now except for an edible oil plant Adani Wilmar at Haldia.