Jamshetji Tata, grandfather of the Tata group chairman Ratan Tata, had donated a handsome amount of money to save animals during a famine at Sanand, the very land offered by the Gujarat government for setting up the Nano project.
After scouting many sites in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, the Tatas have decided to set up the project at Sanand, on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, where the state government will give around 1,000 acres of land from the Anand Agricultural University.
During the worst famine in 1899-1900, Jamshetji Nasarwanji Tata, founder of Tata empire, had donated Rs 1,000 to save the Kankrej cows in the animal pound on the same land.
The pound is no more but a tombstone bearing the name of Jamshetji Tata with the amount of donation is intact along with the names of other donors.
"Jamshetji Tata had donated Rs 1,000 which was a large sum of money in 1900, for the Gau Savardan Kendra to save the dying cows of Kankrej which were brought to the animal pound on the same land which is being offered to the Tata," Ravubha Vaghela, a farmer-turned-industrialist of the area said.
"Philanthropy of Tata on this land will prove lucky for them. It will ensure that they will not face any problem like they faced in Singur," Vaghela believes.
"The Tatas had made the investment by way of donations here but people of Gujarat are returning the investment by giving them the land," Vaghela said.
The writing on the tombstone said during the famine, Kankrej breed of cattle died in large numbers. "The donors came forward in saving lives of the animals."
The MoU between Tata and the Gujarat Government for the land will be signed today.
The land which is being offered to Tata consists of farmland of AAU which was being used to grow grass till now.
The AAU has already transferred the land to the state government so that it can hand it over to the Tatas, officials of the university said.
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