Kitex Managing Director MD Sabu Jacob opened up about shifting his business to Telangana. He asserted that he never abandoned Kerala on his own but was driven away.
Sabu Jacob was speaking to media at Kochi international airport on Friday.
“We are still 50 years behind in terms of industrial matters. Kerala does not see any changes. I am not leaving Kerala. But the state has chased me out. I am sad and disappointed. I am forced to take this decision. A businessman needs peace of mind. I didn’t get it here. I have been hunted like an animal. Nobody took care of me for the last 45 days. I know how to look after myself. But we should stand together to save the youth and new entrepreneurs of the state. We should definitely change Kerala,” said Sabu Jacob.
Kitex Garments, the second-largest children’s apparel manufacturer in the world, has announced the scrapping of the Rs 3,500 crore project for which it had signed a memorandum with the Kerala government at the ‘Ascend Global Investors Meet’ in Kochi in January 2020.
Reiterating his allegation that the atmosphere in Kerala was not conducive for launching business, the industrialist said no other investor in the southern state should face such an experience here.
Jacob said he had been doing business in Kerala for the past 53 years.
“If this is the experience of an investor who has created a history and a revolution in the industrial sector in Kerala, then what would be the fate of those who invest a meagre amount of Rs 10,000 or Rs 20,000 for earning their livelihood?” he asked.
Jacob claimed that not a single Kerala minister telephoned him to enquire about the reasons for his group’s withdrawal from investing in the state.
“But chief ministers of nine states telephoned me. Industrialists also called me. Now a private jet has been sent for us”, Jacob said and called for a change in the approach of the Kerala government towards industries.