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AdaniWatch Update Newsletters
Apr 17, 2024

AdaniWatch newsletter number 7

26 April 2024 

Welcome to the seventh edition of the AdaniWatch Update, a newsletter on everything the Adani Group has been up to in the last fortnight. As always, there’s a focus on the coal projects of Adani, the world’s biggest private developer of coal.

We also have exclusive news about a huge coal power expansion project, and updates on the group’s cements, ship-leasing, ports, data centre and urban development. We’d love to hear your ideas and feedback, mail us on [email protected].


Adani plans huge expansion of coal power plant

Adani Power plans to add 3200 MW of capacity to its Kawai coal power plant in Rajasthan state, according to recently filed environmental-approval applications. The plant currently has a 1320 MW capacity. The more than tripling of capacity will require 470 ha of additional land and burn 12.9 million tonnes of coal per annum over and above the 5.5 million tonnes in the existing units. Coal would be sourced from nearby mines. This plan comes amid the Adani Group’s recent optimism about growth opportunities in coal power. (28 March 2024)

Switch of power contract a coup for Adani at expense of Madhya Pradesh

The Adani Group has pulled off a major coup at the expense of the state of Madhya Pradesh by transferring a power contract from a stalled coal-power project to the up-and-running, expanding Mahan plant. The switch is advantageous to Adani because a high tariff was transferred to a plant with lower production costs. Mahan is on the doorstep of vast coal deposits recently acquired by the Adani Group via auctions of questionable value to the Indian taxpayer. (23 April 2024)

Adani awarded colossal coal deposit despite low bid

A colossal coal block in central India was awarded to an Adani company despite there being only one other bidder. A first round of auctions for the block attracted no other bidders and was cancelled. In the second round, the only other bidder was a company without coal mines in India and which is closely connected to a minister in the Indian government. (22 April 2024)

Workers protest at Adani coal port  

Port workers at Adani’s Gangavaram port in eastern India are on strike demanding better pay, health coverage and a ‘dust allowance’. The port, which Adani acquired in 2022, handles coal that is crucial to nearby government-run steel mills, which are now on the verge of shutting down due to the protests. A senior BJP leader has asked the workers to allow the coal to go to the mills. (18 April 2024).

Adani expects surge in coal businesses

In recent disclosures, the Adani group has said it expects significant growth from coal, including mining, trading and handling coal at its Indian ports. These disclosures contradict statements by the Modi government that India will soon have ‘zero’ imports of coal. (15 April 2024).

Adani to open think tank on climate, energy transition

While India’s independent think tanks are having their funding choked by the Modi government, Adani will now open its own think tank to ‘research’ the energy transition, among other subjects. With Adani’s huge and growing coal-mining business, one can imagine what his think tank’s position on fossils would be. (11 April 2024).

Activists occupy Adani ‘green’ museum in London

In April, climate activists occupied the Adani-sponsored climate gallery in London’s Science Museum, carrying placards that said ‘coal out of our museum’ and calling Adani a ‘giant coal baron’; ‘weapons manufacturer’; ‘human-rights abuser’; and ‘environmental criminal’. (15 April 2024)


Adani slum plan to create ‘largest displacement’

Adani’s proposed redevelopment of Asia’s largest slum, Dharavi in Mumbai, would create ‘one of the largest displacements of people,’ an expert on workers in the slum has told AdaniWatch. (17 April 2024).

Number of shareholders in Adani companies declines

Adani Enterprises had 28% fewer individual shareholders at the end of March 2024 than a year ago, while Adani Power, Adani Ports, ACC and Ambuja Cements saw 10-23% declines too. (19 April 2024).

Adani family finally converts Ambuja Cements warrants

Ending weeks of uncertainty, the Adani family has converted the remaining warrants in Ambuja Cements worth Rs 8339 crore ($1.55 billion), possibly after raising loans worth $750 million to fund the purchase. AdaniWatch has covered how proxy advisors and institutional investors in India think the warrants route of infusing funds is not ideal. (18 April 2024).

GQG ups stake in Adani Group

Investment firm GQG Partners, which invested in the Adani Group at the height of the Hindenburg saga, now owns 3-5% shares in six of eight listed Adani firms. (18 April 2024).

India abstains from vote on Israel arms embargo

India’s surprise abstention from a UN vote on an embargo of arms sent to Israel is suspected to be linked to Adani’s exports of drones to the Israeli military. (17 April 2024).

Adani’s media man was once independent

Sanjay Pugalia, who leads Adani’s media acquisitions, was once known for his forthright style and critical views on the BJP, according to a recent in-depth profile. (20 April 2024).

Adani aims to dominate Indian cements

The Adani Group plans to cater to one-fifth of India’s cement demand by 2028, an ambition termed by one trade publication as ‘cement dominance’. (17 April 2024).

Adani’s Poseidon adventure

The Adani Group is investing US $315 million to set up a ship-leasing business called Poseidon. (12 April 2024).

Opposition leader says India is ‘Adani’s government’

As India’s national elections begin, the main opposition leader Rahul Gandhi has said the Modi government is ‘Adani’s government’ and that ‘everything is done for one billionaire’. (13 April 2024).

Congress leader defends Adani contracts

The Congress chief minister of a southern India state has said that his government’s recent deals with Adani worth $2.3 billion do not imply favouritism. (13 April 2024).

BJP ally says he ‘knows’ Adani

Ajit Pawar, a powerful regional ally of the ruling BJP, said in a poll campaign that he ‘knows’ Adani and can ‘seek help’ from him for investments. (21 April 2024).

Did you know?

Adani’s dominance in steel-making coal

The workers' strike at Adani’s Gangavaram port has revealed the group’s growing dominance in the import of coking coal for India’s steel plants. At least two major steel plants have said that they will have to shut their furnaces if the port does not evacuate their coal supplies soon enough. When Adani acquired the port in 2022, the high share of coal cargo was known, but its sheer centrality to the supply chain for coking coal was not. As it happens, another nearby port at Krishnapatnam, which Adani also owns, is also a major supplier of coking coal to a steel-making region in south-central India. India doesn’t have enough coking coal reserves, and with hydrogen-based steel still a distant dream, imports are critical to feed the national ambition of being self-sufficient in steel. A perfect situation to feed Adani’s expanding coal ambitions.


AdaniWatch Update Newsletter Number 6, 12 April 2024

Welcome to the sixth edition of AdaniWatch Update, a comprehensive update of Adani-related news. Adani is already the world’s biggest private developer of coal but is still expanding its coal footprint through new coal mines and coal ports. Meanwhile, the Adani Group has sponsored India’s most prestigious award for journalism. Please share your feedback and suggestions on [email protected]


Adani acquires yet another coal-handling port

Adani Ports has acquired a 95% stake in Gopalpur Port in eastern India. The port, located in the state of Odisha, is in proximity to coal mines in the forests of central India, as well as a nascent steel industry. The port predominantly handles thermal coal, coking coal and iron ore. This is the third coal-handling Adani port in the region, after Dhamra Port and a terminal at the Visakhapatnam Port. (26 March 2024) 

Adani coal mine approved despite concerns over forest loss

Adani’s upcoming Dhirauli coal mine in central India will clear 600,000 trees, wildlife habitats of leopards, elephants, and other protected species, and the traditional lands of the indigenous Baiga tribe. Although the local forest department raised an alarm against this destruction, the new BJP state government approved the project. For now, the central environment ministry has asked the state to review the proposal again, particularly for its impacts on wildlife. (26 March 2024).

Heat wave to benefit Adani coal-power businesses

With India forecasted to experience heat waves this summer, Adani businesses are likely to benefit. This report in Adani’s own NDTV Profit news channel says the federal government is considering invoking emergency provisions to direct coal-power stations to run at high capacity. This would benefit Adani Power’s Mundra coal-power plant, which has no other long-term power commitments, the report says. (3 April 2024)

Deadline passes for regulator’s report on Hindenburg allegations

On 3 January 2024, India’s Supreme Court directed market regulator SEBI to complete its investigation into the Adani Group ‘preferably within three months’. The deadline has passed but it is not clear if SEBI has submitted its report. The opposition Congress party expressed the fear that SEBI might seek an extension to submit its findings, which would go beyond the national elections scheduled in May and June. (3 April 2024)

Coal power brings Adani and Ambani together

The Reliance Industries of Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani has bought a 26% stake in Adani’s coal-power subsidiary Mahan Energen. Reliance will also buy 500 MW of power for its own use. This is the first collaboration between the two billionaires, who have competing interests in renewable energy, data centers and wireless communications. (29 March 2024).


Vizhinjam Port to be operational by September

In a surprise announcement, the Adani Group said its controversial and troubled Vizhinjam container port in southern India will begin operations in September to coincide with Onam, a local harvest festival. (2 April 2024)

Adani Solar lobbying may cost the firm $100 million

A pending verdict by India’s electricity regulator may cost Adani Solar over $100 million – an indirect outcome of its own lobbying for import restrictions. (5 April 2024).

Rising concerns over Dharavi demolition

Adani’s Dharavi slum rehabilitation may render thousands of poor residents homeless and jobless. In this exclusive interview, an urban-policy expert from Mumbai outlines concerns about this colossal project. (3 April 2024)

Adani commences copper manufacturing

Adani’s Kutch Copper unit sent its first batch of cathodes to customers, beginning the Group’s foray into metals. (28 March 2024).

Adani engages Israeli firm for cleaning solar panels

Adani will install Israeli firm Airtouch’s robotic cleaners on its solar farms in Rajasthan, which would not require water but would generate fewer jobs. (4 April 2024).

Adani converts Ambuja warrants

The Adani family converted warrants worth Rs 6661 (US $800 million) in Ambuja Cements ahead of their expiry. (28 March 2024).

Adani plans coal-power additions

After a long lull, Adani Power has planned an ambitious 6 GW addition to its coal-power capacity. (2 April 2024)

Vast tracts in Gujarat are central to Adani’s ‘green’ ambitions

The Gujarat district of Kutch (or Kachch), where Adani is immensely influential, is also central to the Group’s green ambitions that require vast tracts of land. (8 April 2024).

Adani to pour ‘billions’ into renewables

The Adani Group says it will invest US $27 billion into manufacturing and installing solar and wind-energy projects between now and 2030. (7 April 2024)

Congress turncoat attacks Adani critics

A BJP leader, Gourav Vallabh, who recently switched from the opposition Congress party, has told his old party to ‘stop criticising Adani’. (8 April 2024).

Green vs Green at Adani Wind project in Sri Lanka

After wildlife experts raised concerns over Adani’s controversial wind project in Sri Lanka, some ‘pro-renewables’ activists have come out in support of the project. (8 April 2024)


Adani shadow on journalism awards

The Ramnath Goenka Awards are often called the Pulitzer Prize of India. They have a history of recognising courageous and impartial journalism. But like all media activities in India in the last few years, the awards have been seen to soften towards the Modi government and crony corporations. At this year’s award ceremony, held in March, observers were only slightly shocked to find that Adani was one of its two title sponsors. The ceremony was held for story submissions from 2021 and 2022, when a number of important environmental and corporate investigations into the Adani Group were published (some of which were cited in the Hindenburg report). Stories on Adani or its growing environmental footprint were absent from the awards. It didn’t help that the awards were given out by minister Nitin Gadkari, who in 2017 was accused of breaking the rules to approve a port project that helped an Adani coal terminal. Many journalists saw Adani’s sponsorship as part of the awards’ decline. Such is the rise of the Adani Group in the media industry that one satirical website joked that Adani had accidentally acquired an Indian pregnancy test company because its brand has the word ‘news’ in it.


AdaniWatch Update Newsletter Number 5, 29 March 2024

Welcome to the fifth edition of the AdaniWatch Update. Plenty has happened since our last dispatch, including a probe by the US justice department into Gautam Adani, and environmental concerns over two supposedly green projects of the group. Meanwhile, the publicly-listed companies of Adani have suffered losses in share value worth tens of billions of dollars.

Don’t forget to send us your feedback, thoughts and leads to [email protected].


US probes Adani for bribery

US federal prosecutors are investigating the Adani Group – and, reportedly, Gautam Adani himself – for allegedly paying bribes to Indian officials for favourable treatment on an energy project, Bloomberg reported. The probe is part of ongoing investigations into the Group following the Hindenburg report. Adani companies told Indian stock exchanges that the news is ‘false’ because the group has not (yet) received notices from the US justice department. However, the US probe counters the Group’s narrative that the US government gave it a ‘clean chit’ when it approved a loan to Adani Ports to build a port terminal in Sri Lanka last November. (15 March 2024)

Adani shares, bonds decline as US widens probe

Despite the Adani Group’s denials, markets in India and abroad took Bloomberg’s report seriously. Adani stocks in India lost a total of US $8.4 billion on 18 March 2024, with Adani Enterprises falling 5% that day. Adani Power, Adani Energy Solutions, Adani Total Gas and Adani Ports registered losses over 2%. Adani Ports and Adani Green Energy RJ also declined in US bond markets. (18 March 2024)

Adani stocks still overvalued by over 32%

The share prices of publicly-listed Adani companies could fall further in the near future, suggests an analysis in AdaniWatch. Assessing the intrinsic values of Adani companies using different methods of valuation shows that their share prices are overvalued by at least 32%. The recent fall in share prices following news of the US probe news could, in fact, be a part of a larger correction. (24 March 2024)


Government expert body red-flags destruction of forests, wildlife for Dhirauli coal mine

An Indian governmental expert body has red-flagged the proposed destruction of forests for the Adani Group’s massive Dhirauli coal mine. The central Indian forest earmarked for mining is part of an elephant corridor near a wildlife sanctuary inhabited by tigers. Thousands of forest-dependent indigenous people rely on these forests for water and small-scale forest products. (26 March 2024)

Adani’s greenwash on coal continues

The Adani Group’s doublespeak on carbon emissions was on display in a CNN feature on Adani’s massive Khavda renewable energy project. Sagar Adani, the 30-year old nephew of Gautam, said if India’s future energy needs are met by coal, it would ‘kill all other sustainable energy initiatives happening all across the world, in terms of carbon emissions’. But a few paragraphs later, he is quoted saying the Adani Group would not stop investing in coal since 600 million people would be ‘coming into middle income and upper income’ (sic), and later blames ‘activists in developed nations’ for not understanding India’s challenges. He appears not to have heard of India’s own anti-coal campaigners who are facing a crackdown from the Modi government. (20 March 2024)

Supreme Court dismisses Adani Power plea

India’s Supreme Court has dismissed a petition by Adani Power to receive US $166 million for coal power supplied to Rajasthan state, holding that it did not follow court procedure. It also fined the company Rs 50,000 (about US $600). The state had argued that the company’s demand was ‘mischievous’ and an ‘abuse of process’ to ‘extract’ the money. (18 March 2024)


Adani uses copy-pasted EIA for pumped-hydro project

The environment impact assessment of an Adani pumped-hydro project in India’s Western Ghats has sections copied from a different report, environmental campaigners have found. The allegedly copied sections include references to an irrigation project in a different state, and contradictory sentences about whether or not forests would be submerged by the Adani project. These are serious issues which strike at the root of the EIA, but Adani’s EIA contractor has brushed these off as ‘typos’ in a ‘draft report’. The Western Ghat mountain range is a biodiversity hotspot. (22 March 2024)

Adani’s Sri Lanka wind project raises environmental concerns

Adani’s proposed 250MW wind-power project in northern Sri Lanka is in hot water over environmental concerns. Rohan Pethiyagoda, a biodiversity expert, has termed the project a ‘wasteful scam’ and its environmental impact assessment an ‘absolute disgrace’. In a recent YouTube video, he alleges the assessment ignores the impact of the project on migratory birds. Adani has termed this a ‘vicious campaign’. (21 March 2024)

Student crushed to death under boulder that fell off truck contracted for Adani port project

Ananthu Ajikumar, a 26-year-old student of dentistry in southern India’s Kerala, was tragically killed by a boulder that fell off a truck contracted as part of an Adani port project. The truck was carrying rocks to an Adani tetrapod manufacturing unit for its Vizhinjam port construction. The truck was allegedly loaded beyond legal limits, and the 20 kg boulder fell on Ananthu’s head and then his chest, crushing his ribs and injuring his heart and liver. He died a few hours later. The company has promised Rs 1 crore (US $120,000) in compensation, although Ananthu’s student loan alone is reportedly worth half that much. A few months ago, a teacher lost her leg after her scooter was hit by another rock-carrying Adani truck. Ironically, Ananthu died on the same day Adani Ports’s Vizhinjam subsidiary won an international safety award. (24 March 2024)

Adani considers another container terminal in southern India

Adani Ports was one of the companies that attended a pre-bid meeting to build a container terminal at the government port at Thoothukudi in southern India. This is not too far from Adani’s Vizhinjam port. If Adani Ports is selected, it would mark the company’s dominance over southern India’s coastal trade with a presence at all major ports. (22 March 2024)

Govt is ‘selling all Mumbai to Adani’, says opposition leader

Rahul Gandhi, India’s prominent opposition leader, has accused the Maharashtra BJP coalition government of ‘selling’ Mumbai land to the Adani Group. This comes after a slew of contracts were awarded to Adani companies to ‘redevelop’ slums and government-owned land (see earlier editions of the Update). Adani called Gandhi’s comments ‘preposterous, malicious and unfounded’. (17 March 2024)

Dharavi’s ‘ineligible’ residents face eviction

Nearly two in three residents of Dharavi, Asia’s largest slum, would be ineligible for replacement housing under the Adani Group’s massive redevelopment of the area, according to the scheme’s critics. The residents, among the poorest in the city, do not have paperwork to prove their residence in Dharavi before 1 January 2000, the official cut-off date. The Adani Group says it will rehabilitate everyone, but that remains to be seen. (20 March 2024)


Mauritius has provided Adani data to India

Mauritius has provided data on the beneficiaries of Adani’s shareholding companies incorporated in that (tax-haven) country to Indian stock markets regulator, the Mauritius Minister for Financial Services told reporters on the sidelines of his official visit to India. The Indian regulator, SEBI, is concluding its investigation into the Adani Group’s alleged stock-market manipulation using offshore entities in Mauritius, among other countries. This alleged manipulation was one of the key parts of the explosive Hindenburg report of January 2023. SEBI has until April to finish the investigations, as per a Supreme Court deadline. (23 March 2024).

Adani part of India’s highly unequal ‘billionaire raj’

Economic inequality in India has ‘skyrocketed’ in the last two decades, according to a new study by noted economist Thomas Pikketty and colleagues. India’s wealthy now own 40% of the country’s total wealth, and inequality under the new ‘billionaire raj’ is worse than during the British Raj, the authors said. This has naturally drawn attention to the likes of Gautam Adani, among Asia’s richest and one of the billionaires minted in the last two decades on the back of businesses dealing in coal and infrastructure. (23 March 2024)

Adani’s curious absence from ‘electoral bond’ disclosures

Over the last few weeks, India has disclosed the list of companies that secretly donated many billions of rupees to India’s political parties through so-called electoral bonds. The disclosure, based on a Supreme Court ruling that such bonds were unconstitutional, shows that mining and infrastructure companies were major donors, and that the ruling party, the BJP, was the biggest recipient of such funds. The Adani Group was widely expected to appear in the disclosures but its name was nowhere on the list. The only connection it has is with a road contractor called ABC India Limited, which donated Rs 4 million to the BJP, and in which Adani Properties held a 1.2% stake until last December. The Adani Group has stated that it has never bought electoral bonds. Does the company not donate to political parties? Or if it does, then how does it do so? (21 March 2024)

Adani Total Gas appoints controversial auditor to board

Adani Total Gas has appointed chartered accountant Mukesh M Shah to its board as an independent director. Shah’s accounting firm serves as auditor to Adicorp Enterprises, which has controversial links to Adani Group companies and was named in Hindenburg Research’s report. Shah also sits on the board of Adani Power and seven other Adani subsidiaries. The appointment comes after the company was fined by the Indian stock exchange for delaying appointment of an independent director (see previous edition of this Update). (21 March 2024).

Adani overcharging for natural gas?

Industries in Gujarat, Adani’s home state, have threatened to stop using natural gas if Adani Total Gas does not reduce its gas price in line with global rates. Although international gas prices have reportedly dropped 50% in the last year, Adani Total Gas has not changed its sale price, the industrialists have complained to the company. The company has been given a 10-day ultimatum. (20 March 2024).

Airports regulator doubts Adani numbers

The Airports Economic Regulatory Authority of India has raised questions over Adani’s Thiruvananthapuram airport in southern India, which the group controversially took over in 2021. The Authority said that Adani Airports awarded a contract for non-aeronautical services (restaurants, shopping, etc) to another Adani company through ‘restrictive bid criteria’ and a ‘low revenue share’. Adani is also underestimating its revenue from such services by a factor of four, the authority said. Under India’s airport tariff rules, this could enable Adani to charge higher fees from passengers and airlines. (20 March 2024)


Adani Ports’s love of coal

Within the ‘blue chip’ companies in the Adani Group, Adani Ports projects itself as one that is relatively fossil-free, compared with the likes of Adani Enterprises and Adani Power that are steeped in coal. Adani Ports is known for its dominant position in container-handling operations, which is usually for non-mined goods such as clothes or electronics. Last month, it even boasted of receiving top rankings in ESG (environmental, social, governance) ratings by multiple agencies. But Adani Ports’s origin and growth are inextricably linked to coal. According to Gautam Adani’s biography released last year, when he founded the Mundra port, coal was a crucial cargo that made it viable. Adani began ‘lobbying with state electricity boards to use his port for importing coal’. He was already a major coal importer; moving all of his coal consignments into the port ‘made Mundra economically viable’ and unleashed ‘synergies that continue to play to this day’. Indeed, the port recently revealed that coal and containers are equally the highest share of cargo class that it handles. And of course, Australian coal is exported out of Abbot Point, which is operated by Adani Ports too. Is it time to start seeing Adani Ports as a company inextricably enmeshed in the coal industry?


AdaniWatch Update Newsletter No 4, 15 March 2024.

Welcome to the fourth edition of the AdaniWatch Update. The last fortnight has been controversial as always for the Adani Group. It emerged as a major defence contractor supplying to India and Israel, as well as India’s next big real-estate player with interests in hotels and commercial properties. In an investor presentation, the Adani Group displayed its optimism about the future of coal power in India (it’s the biggest private developer of coal projects in the world), and also expressed interest in lithium mining. Don’t forget to write to us with your suggestions and leads at [email protected]


Adani Power keen on expanding coal power by 4.8 GW

Adani Power is leading an effort by Indian private coal-power producers to 'bet big' on the sector in India, according to a Reuters report. In recent closed-door discussions, the firms told the Modi government they would expand coal-power capacity by 10 gigawatts by reviving stalled projects and expanding old plants. Adani Power's commitment of adding 4.8 GW is the largest in the group, and will no doubt benefit from coal supplies from its own mines, including in Queensland. (5 March 2024).

Adani plans 32% expansion in coal-power capacity

Adani Power aims to add 5500 MW in coal-power capacity in the near future, according to a recent presentation made by the company to investors. This represents a 32% addition to the 15,500 MW in operation and 1600 MW under construction by the company. Adani Power further estimates that 59% of India’s electricity supply in 2032 will be coal-based. This contrasts with the Group’s narrative that it is committed to climate action by building clean power sources. (1 March 2024)

Only one third of Adani coal-power plants abate deadly gas

Coal-power plants emit sulphur dioxide, a deadly gas that can cause respiratory diseases, stunt the growth of trees and cause ‘acid rain’. That’s why plants are required to install flue gas desulphurisation or FGD systems, which abate emission of sulphur dioxide. But only 31% of Adani Power’s plants have installed FGD, it revealed in a recent investor presentation. It expects to reach 100% FGD in its coal-power plants only by 2029. (1 March 2024).

Adani plans more coal power in already polluted area

An Adani Power subsidiary has proposed to add 1600 MW of coal power at the Bandhaura power plant in Singrauli district in central India. The plant already has 1200 MW capacity in operation and another 1600 MW under construction. Now, the company wants to add another 1600 MW, taking the total capacity to 4400 MW. Singrauli is notorious for air pollution caused by coal mining and coal-power plants and is officially designated a ‘severely polluted area’. In a decision released on 26 February, the Modi government’s expert panel raised concerns over increased air pollution, but permitted the company to carry out environment studies and a public hearing. (26 February 2024)

Adani Total Gas fined for not having an independent director

India’s two main stock exchanges have fined Adani Total Gas, a joint venture between Adani and France’s Total group, for not hiring an independent director. The company says it is running an ‘extensive process’ and will appoint one soon. Is it waiting for a government official to retire? The fine is a measly Rs 355,000 ($4280). (23 February 2024).


Adani interested in Lithium mining in central India

The Adani Group has expressed interest to the Modi government in surveying and extracting lithium from a recently discovered deposit in the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh. Adani’s Indian coal-mining operations in India are also in this state. The Geological Survey of India discovered the deposits in 2023 in over 256 hectares of land, which includes 84 hectares of forest. The government is auctioning mining rights to the block. (11 March 2024)

Adani to enter chip manufacturing?

Gautam Adani recently had a ‘great meeting’ with senior officials from Qualcomm, a global giant in semiconductor and communication equipment. Adani was particularly taken by the firm’s vision for ‘semiconductors, AI, mobility, edge appliances and much more,’ he posted on X (formerly Twitter). The Modi government has a Rs 76000 crore ($9.1 billion) program to promote semiconductor manufacturing in India. (11 March 2024)

Adani’s Navi Mumbai Airport struggles to woo airlines

The Navi Mumbai Airport being built by Adani has so far been unable to convince IndiGo and Air India, India’s largest airlines, from operating from there. The existing Mumbai airport (run by Adani since 2021) will continue to be sufficient, IndiGo’s CEO told the Financial Express. Poor connectivity from Navi Mumbai to the city is one of the reasons airlines are reportedly wary. (26 February 2024)

Adani to invest US $7.2 billion in airports

The Adani Group will invest Rs 60,000 crore ($7.2 billion) in the next 10 years into airports, Karan Adani has announced. The company will bid for all 25 government-run airports that are up for privatisation, he said. Interestingly, Adani says the money will go not just into airport infrastructure such as runways but also into nearby ‘hotels and shopping malls’. Meanwhile, Narendra Modi, on the campaign trail for the upcoming national elections, inaugurated an Adani airport terminal. (11 March 2024).

Adani opens massive ammunition complex

Since 2015, the Adani Group’s defence-manufacturing enterprise has emerged as a major arms supplier. After supplying military drones to Israel and the Indian Navy, it has now opened a 200-hectare arms-manufacturing facility in northern India which will meet 25% of India’s small-calibre ammunition requirements. It will also make 12 types of guns and 40 types of rocket and ammunition systems. One gun happens to share its name with that of Gautam Adani’s younger son, Jeet. (27 February 2024).

Adani to make 'big investments' in weapons thanks to Modi-government policies

From coal mining to airports and now weapons, the Adani Group’s expansion proceeds in lockstep with government policies. The Group took to its own TV station, NDTV, to signal 'big investments' over the next 10 years into defence manufacturing. At a ‘defence summit’ organised by NDTV, Adani Defence’s CEO Ashish Rajvanshi explicitly linked his company’s optimism to a push ‘in the last five years’ from the Modi government for local manufacturing of military equipment.  (8 March 2024)

Human rights group demands cancellation of Adani drone unit

The Human Rights Forum, a non-profit active in southern India, has demanded the government cancel Adani's drone-manufacturing contract with Israeli firm Elbit Systems, under which drones are being supplied to the Israeli army. Adani had recently signed a deal with the Telangana state government for further expansion of its aerospace manufacturing facility. ‘While several countries have withdrawn support to Israel in the face of its inhuman carnage of Palestinians, Adani continues to profit from it, lining its pocket with blood money,’ the Forum wrote. (8 March 2024)

Adani enters five-star hotels business

The Adani Group will open two five-star hotels next to the international terminal of its Ahmedabad Airport. This marks its first entry into hospitality.  The US $180-million undertaking is expected to take five years to complete. This is yet another part of the group’s massive expansion into the real-estate business, frequently driven by the Group’s ownership of airports. (28 February 2024)

Adani’s Dharavi project comes with sweeteners

Slum redevelopments in India are hotly contested by affected families, who have often succeeded in delaying or stopping such projects. As Adani plans to rebuild Asia’s largest slum in Mumbai, details are emerging about incentives offered by the BJP coalition state government that could minimise local dissent. These include: a five-year exemption from state goods-and-services tax for affected commercial units, and a stamp-duty exemption on the first sale of commercial and industrial realty. (10 March 2024).

Adani to build 26 EV charging stations

The BJP government in the state of Uttar Pradesh has awarded an Adani company a contract to set up 26 electric-vehicle charging stations along expressways in the state. Adani Total Energies E-Mobility Limited outbid five other bidders. The Modi government has proposed to make expressways ‘EV-ready’, and Adani, as a major supplier of electricity in the country, has sniffed an opportunity. (9 March 2024)


Adani ‘charm offensive’ yields investor interest

Adani Green Energy has successfully sold US $409 million worth of bonds to global investors in a turnaround since the explosive Hindenburg report of January 2023. Reasons are reported to include an overall interest in India and a ‘charm offensive’ by Adani officials. 55% of these investors were from Asia or the Middle East, in comparison to the earlier dominance of investors from the US and Europe. (5 March 2024).

‘Warrants’ purchases by Adani Group into own companies raise concerns

The Adani family has infused funds into the Group’s own publicly-listed companies through a financial instrument which has been criticised as a sign of poor governance. The instrument, known as ‘warrants’, enables the promoter group to make a part purchase of shares, retaining the right to complete the purchase (or not) at a later date. The concern is that the Adani family has the ability to ‘ride the stock market’ in completing its purchase of additional shares in Group companies. (1 March 2024)

Adani taps Japanese banks

Japanese banks have been focusing on India. The Adani Group has relied increasingly on them to substitute for Wall Street firms that grew wary following the Hindenburg report’s revelations. Japanese bank MUFG facilitated Adani’s investor roadshows following the report’s fallout. (27 February 2024)


Former income-tax investigator joins board of Adani Ports

Adani Ports has appointed a retired senior investigator of India’s income-tax department as an independent director on its board. MV Bhanumathi, who retired last May, had lately launched probes into, among others, politicians and public personalities opposed to the BJP. The Adani Group did not figure in her investigations. The group has a history of appointing retired regulatory officials and bureaucrats to its boards (see the second edition of this Update). (4 March 2024)

Congress politician accuses ‘Modi’s friend’ of taking over prime land

Adani’s realty push in India has caught the attention of opposition parties. A Congress legislator has accused the Mumbai municipal body of helping the Adani Group capture prime land in the city. 'Bandra reclamation land, Air India colony land, Mulund, Kanjurmarg, salt pan lands. Who was given all of this? The honourable friend of the country’s Prime Minister, Adani,' Varsha Gaikwad said during a session of the Maharashtra state legislature. BJP politicians were quick to come to Modi’s (and thus Adani’s) defence. (See previous editions of the Update for some of these deals). (29 February 2024)

Did you know?

With Hasdeo coal mines, Adani wins either way

The Chhattisgarh government recently began cutting trees for an expansion of Adani's coal mines in India’s Hasdeo forests. The tree felling was pending for over one and a half years, because of opposition from the local indigenous community. But this wasn't a big setback for the Adani Group, as apparent from the latest annual report [See Page 14 of PDF] of the Rajasthan state power utility, which is the end-user of the coal. (The annual report was released last September and has not been written about earlier).

The report says that supplies from the Hasdeo mine stopped in August 2022 after the initial coal mine area was exhausted. Then, to bridge the shortfall in coal supply, the government of India offered coal from one of its own mines. But the Modi government also 'directed' the utility to engage Adani Enterprises to transport the coal from the government mine to Rajasthan. The government also 'directed' the utility to place orders for imported coal, again from Adani Enterprises, for blending with the government-mined coal, the annual report says. Now that the trees have been felled by the new BJP government in Chhattisgarh, Adani's mining will resume. No matter the challenge, Adani gets by, with a little help from its friends.


AdaniWatch Newsletter Number 3, 1 March 2024.

Welcome to the third edition of the AdaniWatch Update. The Adani Group is the world’s biggest private developer of new coal projects, so is having a devastating impact on the world’s climate. We have many updates on the Adani Group’s coal ventures, including two important legal challenges in India and Australia. There’s more on the controversial and destructive Vizhinjam port project, on several new enterprises that will adversely affect the environment, and on the Adani Group’s role in providing the state of Israel with new weapons. Don’t forget to send us your feedback, thoughts and leads on  [email protected].


Green court overturns approval for Adani coal mine due to collusion and ignorance

A recent order by India’s National Green Tribunal, overturning the environment approval to an Adani-operated coal mine, reveals several irregularities. The government left out affected people from the public consultation and ignored its own medical institute’s findings on severe health impacts of coal mining. (23 February 2024)

Adani plans to use coal ash from Godda power plant in cement factory

Adani-owned Ambuja Cements has said it would set up a new cement grinding unit worth Rs 1000 crore ($120 million) near its Godda coal power plant, which went online in 2023. The unit would use fly ash from the plant and is yet another example of the apparent synergy between the group’s coal and cement verticals (see previous edition of this update for more). (21 February 2024)

Adani coal mine expansion ravages biodiversity-rich forest

The expansion of the Adani-operated coal mines in the Hasdeo forests in central India has led to nearly 150,000 trees being cut, with another 399,000 estimated to face the axe. Shortly after a recent tree felling, distressed wild elephants charged into a hamlet, killing an indigenous person. (19 February 2024)

Case in Queensland court against Adani coal mining

Traditional owners of the Adani Group’s Carmichael coal mine have filed a case in the Queensland Supreme Court, alleging breach of their human rights due to alleged pollution by the mine of sacred wetlands. A group of owners says it will present evidence of hydrocarbon contamination and groundwater decline caused by the mine. (17 February 2024)

Bangladesh struggles to pay Adani for Godda coal power

Bangladesh’s central bank has had to step in to cover a shortage of US Dollars in the country to pay US $1.12 billion to Adani for sourcing electricity from its Godda coal plant. This has revived concerns about whether the power-import deal is in the country’s best interests. (17 February 2024)

Adani Group’s coal business funds new ventures

Proceeds from the Adani Group’s polluting operations such as mining coal are supporting its growth in new ventures like airports, data centers and green energy, according to a column in Reuters. (14 February 2024).

Jeffries upbeat on Adani coal company

American financial firm Jeffries has made talked up its ESG and sustainability goals. But that has not stopped it from recommending investors buy shares of Adani Enterprises, the main coal-mining firm of the Adani Group. Jeffries expects the stock to rise 20%, it said in its first ever report on the company. (13 February 2024)

Adani to take over bankrupt coal-power plant

Adani Power and a consortium partner have received approval from India’s antitrust watchdog to take over a bankrupt 1200MW coal-power plant located near India’s southeastern coast. The Coastal Energen plant uses 5.2 million tonnes per annum of imported coal, so is another potential client for Adani’s Australian and Indonesian coal mines. (13 February 2024)


Adani to enter nuclear power?

The Modi government is talking to five Indian power companies, including Adani Power, to invest $5.3 billion each in developing public-private nuclear-power facilities, according to Reuters. The companies would be expected to acquire land and water and carry out construction, while the government would operate the facilities as is required by Indian law. (21 February 2024)

Judicial rulings stymie investigation into alleged ‘over-invoicing’ scam by Adani Group

In early 2024, rulings by the Supreme Court and the Delhi High Court appear to have shunted any effective investigation of some serious allegations against the Adani Group off into the never-never. The judgments pertain to allegations of ‘over-invoicing’ by Adani Power, a practice where goods are imported through an intermediary at an inflated price, allowing the buyer to pocket the difference while over-charging consumers. (21 February 2024)

Adani begins production at massive desert solar installation

Adani Green Energy has begun operating 551 MW of capacity from its Khavda solar park in an arid part of Gujarat. It plans a massive 30 GW deployment there over five years, modifying vast swathes of the desert ecology with solar panels, roads and infrastructure for an 8000-strong workforce. Indian law exempts solar projects from environmental impact assessments, and most desert environments aren’t protected by environmental laws. (20 February 2024)

Adani’s Vizhinjam port a ‘sweet deal’

While local fisherfolk suffer from its construction, the Adani group’s Vizhinjam port in Kerala offers several incentives to the company, many of them unusual among such projects in India. According to this report, the company is footing just one-third of the total cost, gets to mortgage all project assets, and earns an extra ‘fee’ of Rs 19,555 crore ($2.3 billion) at the end of the concession period. (21 February 2024)

Adani Vizhinjam Port to get ‘viability’ rupees

Adani Ports’s controversial Vizhinjam Port project in southern India will soon receive Rs 817 crore ($98 million) of ‘viability gap funding’ from the Modi government – essentially taxpayer money to make unviable projects possible. The Kerala government has agreed to sign requisite paperwork to get these funds credited, on the condition that Adani withdraws legal claims to be paid Rs 3854 crore ($464 million) by the state (over delays in building the port), and that it builds the remaining two phases of the project by 2028 instead of 2045. (16 February 2024)

Adani to capitalise on truck-fuel transition

The Indian government intends to deploy liquefied natural gas as a replacement to diesel for truck fuel. Adani Total Gas plans to capitalise on this with an expansion of LNG outlets on highways (as well as LNG import terminals, the first of which was opened last year). (18 February 2024)

Adani wins big new Mumbai real estate contract

Adani Realty has won a contract to develop over 10 ha of sea-facing land in Mumbai. The contract, to build commercial and residential premises, was awarded by a public company run by the state BJP coalition government. Adani is fast dominating the mega-city’s real-estate market, considered among the world’s most expensive. It is redeveloping Asia’s largest slum and developing land near the Mumbai airport (see first and second edition of this update). (16 February 2024)

Adani to enter aircraft-leasing business

Adani Ports has floated a subsidiary, Udanvat Leasing, that aims to acquire and lease aircraft to airlines. Aircraft leasing is a $178 billion global market. The company aims to invest Rs 555 crore (US $67 million) into the business and will receive benefits from a tax-free zone in Gujarat. (14 February 2024)


The Adani Group, weapons and Israel

The Adani Group manufactures deadly drones, sniper rifles and assault weapons in joint venture with Israeli arms company. A major product is Hermes 900, a drone that can carry 400 kg.

Adani-built drones in the Israel-Palestine conflict

Twenty drones built by an Adani facility in India have been sent to Israeli Defence Forces, and are reportedly active in the Gaza conflict. The drones, being built in partnership with an Israeli firm, were recently supplied to the Indian Navy too (see first edition of the Update). (14 February 2024)


Adani is trying to buy goodwill with its handouts in coal-business areas?

Indian companies involved in mining and other polluting activities are known to fund ‘social’ activities to buy local goodwill, without having to abate pollution. The Adani Group seems to follow this principle quite closely with its coal-related initiatives. In Australia, it supports the footy team North Queensland Cowboys (through its subsidiary Bravus) and was recently present ‘front and centre’ at a season-starting event. In India, last week it donated Rs 60 lakh (US $72,000) to two Hindu temples near its Udupi coal power plant. It has also funded ‘education, health, rural infrastructure and sports’ in the vicinity, says a Times of India report. A friendly biography of Gautam Adani, released in 2023, lists more: a school near the sprawling Mundra port precinct, a football academy near the Hasdeo forests coal mines, rice-farming training near the Tiroda coal-power plant, a school at the Kawai coal-power plant, and skills programs in Hasdeo, Kawai and Godda.


AdaniWatch Update Number 2, 14 February 2024

Welcome to the second edition of the Adani Update, a fortnightly newsletter where we compile recent developments related to the Adani Group of companies. As with the last edition, we have plenty of updates on the Group’s growing coal footprint, new forays in foreign countries (and continents) and its ever-increasing control over Indian media.


Adani Power likely to take over central Indian coal-power plant

Adani Power will likely take over the 1920 MW Amarkantak coal power plant in central India, according to The Economic Times. The company remained the sole bidder in an auction for the plant under bankruptcy rules after other bidders did not show up (the company has said it is yet to receive official confirmation). This is a remarkable turnaround for Adani Power, which was originally disqualified from the process (see our previous edition for more). (9 February 2024)

Adani Maharashtra coal mine set for approval

Adani’s Gondkhairi underground coal mine has been approved amid local protests and concerns it would deplete water resources in the drought-prone region. An expert committee of the Modi government has recommended environmental approval for the project, ignoring intense opposition at a local public hearing. (8 February 2024)

Adani Power was paid $1 billion in excess charges for coal power, alleges Opposition

The opposition Congress party has made the startling accusation that the BJP-led state government of Gujarat has paid an excess of nearly US $1 billion to Adani Power for coal-fired electricity in 2022 and 2023, compared with prices originally contracted with the company. The state says it paid higher charges because of an increase in the price of imported coal. With Adani now running a coal mine in Australia, it should provide cheaper coal, the opposition retorted. (7 February 2024)

India’s green court quashes approval for Adani coal mine

India’s environment court has struck down environmental approval for the Gare Pelma-II coal mine in Chhattisgarh, which Adani Enterprises is developing on contract. The tribunal reportedly said a mandatory public hearing conducted for the project was invalid. The mine would displace 14 villages. (5 February 2024)

Adani cement subsidiary to buy Adani coal

Adani Enterprises will now sell bulk coal to Sanghi Cement, a subsidiary of Adani-owned Ambuja Cements. The Adani Group’s recent entry into India’s cement industry first made sense given the group’s heavy use of the product in building infrastructure. Turns out, that’s not all. Making cement requires coal, and the Adani Group has plenty of it. (6 February 2024)

Adani Power gets ratings upgrade as Godda coal-power plant goes online

As Adani Power’s Godda coal-power plant goes online, the firm’s financial risk has reduced, according to a recent finding by CRISIL, a subsidiary of S&P. The ratings firm also cited relief from electricity-tariff regulators and the Supreme Court’s recent order in the Hindenburg case. (5 February 2024)

Coal shipments power Adani Ports’s growth

For the quarter ending December 2023, Adani Ports reported a 44% rise in cargo volumes over the same quarter in 2022, the highest ever quarterly volume handled by the company, and the highest monthly volume at its flagship Mundra port in Gujarat. Coal shipments were a big driver of this growth (p.40). In a call with analysts, Karan Adani said the company has found new opportunities moving coal between its ports along India’s coastline, thanks to the rise in India’s coal volumes and the introduction of private-sector mining. (The Modi government has also promoted movement of coal by sea). (1 February 2024)

The global lenders supporting Adani coal businesses

A recent briefing by BankTrack identifies 15 outstanding bonds worth $7.8 billion issued by the Adani Group that finance its coal-related businesses. The 19 bond arrangers and underwriters, who enabled the financing, include a who’s who of global banks such as Barclays, which the report called the Adani Group’s ‘steadfast supporter’ and among its ‘most loyal financiers’. (January 2024)


Adani in-law bids for bankrupt news wire

Rakesh Shah, Gautam Adani’s brother-in-law, is one of the bidders of United News of India, a 65-year-old news wire that has filed for bankruptcy, reports Newslaundry. The news wire fell into losses after India’s state broadcaster, which is under the control of the Modi government, cancelled its subscription in 2020. (3 February 2024)

Adani Group takes over Indian news agency

The Adani Group’s media empire continues to grow. It has now acquired Indo Asian News Service, a major news wire in the country. The Adani Group now controls two TV news stations, a business-news website and a general news wire, thus emerging as a major media company in India. (18 January 2024)


Adani could soon run Sri Lanka airports

Weeks after a Nepal cabinet minister asked Gautam Adani to consider taking over the country’s three airports, a minister from Sri Lanka has said that Adani Airports could take over three airports in the island nation, including the international airport in capital Colombo, where the Group is already building a container terminal and a wind-power project (which was allegedly handed to the company on Modi’s wishes). (9 February 2024)

Adani wants to make electric buses

Adani Enterprises has submitted a bid to supply and operate 3600 electric buses under a Modi government scheme launched last year to provide 10,000 e-buses to cities. Winners would receive financial support from the government (totaling US $694 million) for 10 years. (9 February 2024)

Adani bids for Tanzanian container terminal

Adani Ports intends to take over a container terminal at Tanzania’s main port in Dar Es Salaam. The east African country’s antitrust regulator will now assess whether the deal, which is in collaboration with the Abu Dhabi Ports Group, would harm competition. Adani Ports already runs container berths at the port under a contract from the ports authority. (8 February 2024)

Questions over Adani Green’s Western Ghats projects

Large hydroelectric projects are supposed to be banned in India’s Western Ghats forests, one of the world’s hottest hotspots of biodiversity. But the Modi government has allowed Adani Green Energy to conduct environmental assessments for three such projects. Meanwhile, an advisor to Adani Green has quit a government environment panel after Opposition claims of conflict of interest. (7 February 2024)

Adani hosts Australian ex-PM Turnbull in Gujarat

In early February, Gautam Adani and his wife, Priti, hosted Australian ex-PM Malcolm Turnbull and his wife, Lucy, in Gujarat. The Turnbulls visited an Adani renewable energy park. ‘Every engagement with Mr Turnbull is enriching, thought-provoking and educational,’ Gautam Adani posted on X (formerly Twitter). As Australia’s 29th Prime Minister, Turnbull played a key role in advancing the Carmichael coal venture. (6 February 2024)

Adani Ports readies controversial port in Kerala

The Adani Group is nearing completion of its Vizhinjam port, ignoring protests from local fishing communities and claims that the project exacerbates coastal erosion. The Group says construction will be completed in May but has demanded the state government of Kerala, which commissioned the project, to ‘immediately’ cough up INR 1200 crore (about $144 million) to meet this deadline. (4 February 2024)

Adani Group to begin producing copper

The Adani Group will soon dominate copper manufacturing in India, coinciding with climbing demand for the metal from electric vehicles and batteries. Its first copper manufacturing plant will commence operations by the end of March, the Press Trust of India reported. This will bring the group to par with India’s largest copper manufacturer, and a planned expansion in 2029 will make it India’s largest. (4 February 2024)


The recent resignation by a senior Adani Green Energy advisor from the government’s environmental expert panel on hydroelectric projects brought to light how senior officials from government entities can end up in Adani companies. Many of them have dealt with the Adani Group as regulators or served in a competing public company.

Take Adani Enterprises: its independent directors include a civil servant who served in senior posts of government departments dealing with renewable energy and civil aviation, and another who served in senior positions in Gujarat and in India’s international trade ministry. In Adani Ports, independent directors include a former senior diplomat and former secretary for internal security. Adani Energy Solutions has retired chiefs of government electricity utilities on its board and in senior management. Adani Gas is led by a former senior employee of two state gas utilities.

The Adani Green Energy official who resigned from the expert panel is a former director of the Indian government’s hydropower development company. His was the first case of an Adani official being appointed to a government regulatory panel. Will it be the last?


AdaniWatch Update Number 1, 31 January 2024

Welcome to the first edition of the Adani Update. This fortnightly newsletter brings you all important developments from across the Adani Group of companies, ranging from updates on their coal projects, ongoing cases in courts, investigative stories, and so on. It is your single source for updates related to the group. We’d love to hear suggestions on how we may improve the content, and we welcome leads on what to include. Do write to us on [email protected].

Coal mines and coal power

Case update: over-invoicing of power equipment imports

The Supreme Court has declined to review its verdict of last March absolving Adani Power of illegally buying overpriced power equipment from a Dubai company linked to Vinod Adani. All eyes are now on the Delhi High Court, which in December directed a ‘meticulous’ inquiry into the imports, but later suspended its order pending the Supreme Court’s review. (26 January 2024)

Adani Power rakes in rupees as Godda plant goes online

Adani Power, which runs coal-fired thermal plants of the group, reported a staggering 60% rise in revenues in the September-December quarter compared with the same period in 2022. The company attributed the growth to, among other reasons, the commissioning of the controversial (read Adani Watch reports here, here) Godda plant in Jharkhand. Meanwhile, in yet another related party transaction, the company will sell two data centers to an Adani joint venture for INR 540 crore (about AUD 98 million). (25 January 2024)

Adani Power case languishes in top court

India’s Supreme Court has pulled up its own administration for not listing a case related to an Adani Power coal-power project in Rajasthan. An electricity utility has challenged a demand by the Adani company for additional payments of INR 1376 crore (about US $166 million). The case was listed finally, and the judges have reserved their verdict. (23 January 2024)

Adani plans cement unit near coal-power plant

The Adani group is planning to set up a cement manufacturing unit near Godda in Jharkhand, where it is exporting power to Bangladesh from a controversial 1600 MW thermal power plant. The group plans to use fly ash generated from burning coal as raw material for cement. (22 January 2024)

Adani Group’s toxic coal-to-plastics plan

The Adani Group plans to convert coal into polyvinyl chloride – a type of plastic – at a planned facility in Mundra, Gujarat. Veteran journalist Paranjoy Guha Thakurta interviewed plastics-policy commentator Swathi Seshadri on the toxic manufacturing process and how the project relates to the Carmichael coal mine in Australia.  (16 January 2024)

An ‘unsolicited’ offer to buy out thermal plant

Adani Power is in the running with competitor Reliance to buy out a bankrupt coal-fired coal- power plant in central India. Lanco Amarkantak Power has 600 MW capacity with another 1320 MW under construction. The units are close to the Group’s coal mines in the biodiversity-rich Hasdeo Arand forest and draw water from the Hasdeo river. (8 January 2024)

Financial Updates

Supreme Court says no to more probes into Adani

Numerous financial developments outlined below have followed from the India’s Supreme Court refusal to order a special investigation into the Adani Group’s alleged manipulation of stock prices. Petitions had been filed following Hindenburg Research’s short-selling report in January 2023, which accused the Adani Group of ‘pulling the greatest con in corporate history’. The court found the Indian stock market regulator’s ongoing investigation to be adequate – apparently ignoring its own technical committee’s finding that the probe could not reach the heart of the matter. It has instead asked for a probe into Hindenburg’s short-selling trades. (4 January 2024)

Gautam Adani back among world’s richest

Share prices of Adani companies rose following the Supreme Court verdict of 4 January 2024, putting Gautam Adani back in the league of the world’s richest. Group shares had crashed to just one-third of their value following release of the explosive Hindenburg report, and are still about 24% below pre-Hindenburg levels, reports The Economic Times. Of the ten listed companies, seven are still below last year’s prices – Adani Total Gas is 74% down, while Adani Ports and Adani Power are up 47% and 87% respectively. (25 January 2024)

Global asset managers raised Adani bondholding in 2023

Wall Street giants Blackrock and State Street are among asset managers who raised their ownership of Adani company bonds in 2023 amid the rout following Hindenburg’s report, reports Bloomberg. (24 January 2024)

S&P revises outlook on two Adani firms, but says governance still a concern

Even ratings firms know the stock market regulator’s investigation into allegations against the Adani Group will yield little. Ratings giant S&P revised its outlook on Adani Ports and Adani Electricity Mumbai to ‘stable’ from ‘negative’, citing low downside risk from regulatory investigations following the Supreme Court order of 4 January. But it said high promoter control and related party transactions remain ‘relative weakness’ for the Group. (22 January 2024)

Adani eyes Telangana for investments

The Adani Group is eyeing investments in defence manufacturing and data centers in the southern state of Telangana. This is attributed to the new Congress government in the state, which is courting the Group even as the party’s national leaders criticise PM Modi for his alleged closeness to the Group. (20 January 2024)

Adani Properties purchase yields windfall for BJP politician

Adani Properties, a private firm owned wholly by the Adani Group, bought a piece of ecologically-sensitive wetland in northern India from a local BJP politician. He had bought the land at a reportedly low price a few months earlier, reports. (20 January 2024)

More documentary evidence of suspicious shareholding in Adani firms

Investigative journalists continue to reveal new information on the Adani Group. Tax-haven firms of two key Adani associates of the Group have traded in Adani company shares, potentially violating Indian shareholding rules as per documents published by AdaniWatch. Given that Adani stocks have low public shareholding, these trades could have manipulated stock prices – one of the key allegations against the group. (19 January 2024)

Adani Green fundraising red-flagged

Late in December 2023, Adani Green Energy announced it would raise close to US $1.1 billion from the Adani family, in exchange for warrants that can be converted to shares within 18 months. Now, a proxy advisory firm has said the move is against interests of minority shareholders, saying the family should have ideally bought equity upfront. (10 January 2024)

Adani Ports raises debt

Following the Supreme Court verdict, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone announced that it would raise US $60 million in bonds, its first debt raise in two years. But the company had to offer a higher interest than comparable issuers, apparently to appease investors who continue to be circumspect about the group. The company plans to raise up to INR 5000 crore (US $600 million) from bond markets. (9 January 2024)

Adani buys out cement firm

The Adani Group has acquired Asian Concrete and Cements Private Limited, which runs units in northern India. The group had thrown a surprise in 2022 by acquiring ACC and Ambuja Cements to become India’s second largest cement company. A reminder that these companies are ultimately owned by a Vinod Adani-linked firm. (8 January 2024)

Adani’s controversial Mumbai ‘slum dog’ redevelopment

The Adani group has appointed contractors for its ambitious Dharavi slum redevelopment project in Mumbai and announced a survey of residents. In 2022, the group won a tender to demolish and redevelop Dharavi, Asia’s largest slum, after the Maharashtra state government cancelled an earlier tender won by a different company. The state government also amended its real-estate rules, allegedly enabling the Adani Group to sell more transferable development rights arising from the project. (1 January 2024)

Community Protests

Fisherfolk oppose Adani port expansion in southern India

Adani Ports’s plan to expand its Kattupalli port in southern India is facing opposition from local fisherfolk and environmentalists. The state chief minister, who was elected to office in 2021, has not kept his poll promise to scrap the project. (25 January 2024)

Adani Group’s demolitions in Mumbai face protest

The Adani group began demolishing a neighbourhood near the Mumbai airport, where it plans to build new commercial infrastructure. It faced ‘heated’ opposition from residents, who claimed the Supreme Court had suspended the demolitions until February. (24 January 2024)

Orchardist alleges harassment for opposing Adani power line

The story of a 70-year old orchardist in eastern India sums up the life of those who oppose an Adani Group project. He has faced harassment and intimidation for defending his fruit trees from the electricity transmission line connecting Adani Power’s coal-power plant in Godda with Bangladesh.


Adani Group plans investments in Nepal

In late January, Gautam Adani held discussions with Nepal’s finance minister and expressed interest in taking over two airports, including Kathmandu’s Tribhuvan International Airport, as well as building hydropower projects. (27 January 2024)

Adani Airports to expand beyond India

The Adani Group says it will look at operating airports outside India, possibly in Southeast Asia, according to a report in Livemint. The group had no airport businesses four years ago. Meanwhile, its Navi Mumbai airport is nearing completion. Once operational, it would put the group in the rare position of running two airports in a major Indian city. (8 January 2024)

New Ventures

Adani to seize smart meter bounty

India’s smart meter policy aims to replace the country’s 250 million-or-so electricity billing meters with internet-enabled devices. Adani Energy Solutions, which already has orders for 20 million meters from various states, aims to take 25% of the total market share. It also signed a deal with wireless services giant Airtel for connectivity. (26 January 2024)

Adani to build EV charging stations

The Adani Group is making slow inroads into India’s electric-vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure. In January 2024, it won a tender to set up charging stations for EVs in the western Indian city of Pune. The group’s electricity arm already provides EV charging to housing complexes. Last month, Adani Total Gas also announced plans to set up 75,000 EV charging stations. In Pune, it will receive electricity from the government utility at a rate below what is charged to commercial users, according to the Indian Express. It will also get land to develop solar power sources. (10 January 2024)

Indian Navy to fly Adani-built surveillance drones

Nine years ago, the Adani Group was not a defence-equipment manufacturer. This month, it handed over state-of-the-art surveillance drones to the Indian Navy. The unmanned aerial vehicle is based on a system developed by Adani’s Israeli partner firm Elbits. Last year, the Indian military placed drone orders with Elbits under an ‘emergency procurement’ program. India’s armed forces are looking at procuring 155 such medium-altitude drones, according to The Hindu. (10 January 2024)

Tesla to build cars at Adani industrial zone?

An intriguing report by a senior shipping journalist in The Economic Times claims that Tesla might set up an electric car factory in the Adani Group’s special economic zone in Mundra. The article, based on information from unnamed sources, says Tesla might choose Mundra because of its tax exemptions and proximity to the huge Mundra port. (9 January 2024)

Adani Group affairs

Gautam’s son Karan gets promoted

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone elevated CEO Karan Adani as its managing director, replacing his father Gautam Adani, who is now the executive chairman. Ashwani Gupta, a former chief operating officer at Nissan, was named the new CEO. (3 January 2024)

Modi and BJP may not have declared Adani jet expense

Narendra Modi famously used an Adani group private jet in 2014 to fly to Delhi to be appointed as India’s 14th prime minister. Gautam Adani had then said that this was a commercial lease. But an investigation by Abir Dasgupta for AdaniWatch finds that neither Modi nor his Bharatiya Janata Party have reported paying for the aircraft. Meanwhile, the group will double its jets fleet. Will Modi fly in them this election? (18 January 2024)

Gautam Adani attends temple ceremony

Gautam Adani attended the consecration ceremony of the controversial Ram temple in northern India, at the site of a medieval mosque that was illegally demolished in 1992 by Hindu extremists. The temple was built following Supreme Court orders in 2019. The ceremony was widely considered to be a pageant for PM Modi ahead of national elections. Adani said the temple’s opening is a ‘gateway to enlightenment and peace’.

Did you know? A family affair.

Karan Adani’s elevation as the managing director of Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone, replacing his father Gautam at the top of the group’s most financially stable company, confirmed his position as the heir apparent to the Adani family empire. It also spotlights the quiet rise of the second generation of Adanis into prominent roles that seem to be clearly divided – perhaps to prevent future disputes? Gautam’s younger son, Jeet, who graduated in 2019, is involved in group finance and the airports and digital app businesses. Their elder cousin Pranav, son of Vinod Adani, leads the agricultural, real-estate and piped-gas pursuits of the group, and is also the ‘chief custodian of Brand Adani’. Sagar, son of Rajesh Adani, graduated in 2015 and is executive director of Adani Green Energy. Absent are Vinod’s two daughters (one of whom is married to the son of fugitive businessman Jatin Mehta). Rajesh’s young daughters, Rahi and Vanshi, have Adani coal-bearing ships named after them, and it remains to be seen if they join the Group as they grow older. Vanshi, who graduated last year, interned with the group as a student.


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