Geoff Law

  • published AdaniWatch Update Newsletters in Blog 2024-04-17 12:36:44 +1000

    AdaniWatch Update Newsletters

    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.


  • ‘Adani Go Back!’ Fact-finding report on resistance to Adani’s ‘Gondulpara’ coal project

    A fact-finding mission has found that Adani’s proposed ‘Gondulpara’ coal mine will destroy over 500 ha of fertile farmland and forests in the Indian state of Jharkhand. Five villages will be severely impacted. Over 780 families will be displaced. Villagers told the authors of the report that they have been persecuted by government authorities for having taken such a strong stance against Adani’s coal project. Police have charged protesters with various offences. Government assistance for the area’s livelihoods has been terminated. The local cooperative has been instructed not to buy rice from farmers opposed to Adani’s project. Still, the protests continue.

    Report authors, Akash Ranjan and Dhiraj Kumar, are social activists based in Jharkhand who are working to enhance rights to food security.  In April 2023, they visited villages threatened by the Adani Group’s proposed ‘Gondulpara’ coal mine. (Note that Adani continues to misspell the name of the area’s main village – Gondalpura.)

    Local people whose villages, homes and way of life are threatened by Adani's 'Gondulpara' (sic) coal project.

    They undertook this mission to explore the reasons behind the steadfast opposition of local people to the project, which was allotted to Adani Enterprises in November 2020. This is a summary of their fact-finding report.

    Five villages will be severely impacted by the mining project with 781 families displaced

    A total of 513 ha of land will be acquired for the project in and around the villages of Gondalpura, Gali, Balodar, Hahe and Phoolang. Of this, 43.5% is raiyyati land (land owned by the people for which legal rights to cultivate it are held); 42.8% is forest land; and 13.7% is Gair Majarua land – that is, land publicly owned for public purposes such as water supplies, crematoria, temples and so on.

    A scene at Balodar, one of the five villages to be severely impacted by Adani's proposed Gondalpura coal mine.

    Out of the five villages, 115 ha of raiyyati land will be acquired in Gondalpura, 71 ha in Gali, and 37 ha in Balodar. Rayyati land will not be acquired in the villages of Hahe and Phoolang.

    A total of 781 families will be displaced due to mining.

    Multi-crop land is being acquired for coal mining

    Rice and sugarcane on fertile land earmarked for destruction by Adani's 'Gondulpara' coal project.

    About 223 ha of farmland of three of the above villages is to be taken over for mining. This land is highly fertile, supporting more than one crop each year. Rice, wheat, sugarcane, vegetables and pulses are cultivated. There is abundant ground water. According to the villagers, water is available here at a depth of about six metres. Rice yield is approximately 5-6 tonnes per ha per year.

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  • 'Kindly leave from here!' Farmers’ blockade against coal mine thwarts Adani and armed police

    At a cluster of small villages in north-eastern India, a David-and-Goliath struggle is being played out between Adani and the local people. Government authorities have connived with the Adani Group, which is attempting to take over farms, forests and villages for a huge coal mine. But the people have fought back, blocking Adani’s henchmen at every turn.

    The name of Adani’s 550-ha coal project is ‘Gondulpara’, a misspelling of the main village affected, Gondalpura. Four other villages would also be severely impacted in this fertile region of the Indian state of Jharkhand.

    This powerful film shows hundreds of local people blocking an access road to one of the threatened villages in October 2022. Adani and government officials confront the people, reading officious verbiage through a megaphone. The are backed by uniformed, armed police. Not far from here, in 2016, villagers protesting against a coal mine proposed by a different company were gunned down. This film by the Rimil Umul Collective is testament to the courage of people defending their land, water, livelihoods and way of life.

    'Kindly leave from here!' - YouTube

  • Has West Bengal lost confidence in 'the ginger trader's' ability to develop the huge Tajpur port project?

    In 2022, the government of the Indian state of West Bengal selected the Adani Group as the developer of a major new port at Tajpur, on the Bay of Bengal. However, with the recent meltdown in the value of Adani’s stocks, questions have been raised about the conglomerate’s ability to deliver the project. The conspicuous absence of the previously much-touted development from February’s state budget speech added fuel to the fire, as did the chief minister's reference to Adani as a 'ginger trader' (petty operator). Meanwhile, fishing communities remain fearful that the project’s impacts on the coastline will deprive them of their traditional livelihoods.

    Men and women, belonging to a fishing community, engaged in the traditional activity of drying fish near Tajpur.

    With the sharp nosedive in the fortunes of the Adani Group in early 2023, questions have been raised about the fate of Adani’s ambitious port project on the Bay of Bengal in the eastern Indian state of West Bengal. On 9 October 2022, a year after being re-elected to power, the West Bengal chief minister, Mamata Banerjee, selected the Adani Group to develop a deep-sea port at Tajpur.

    But after no mention at all was made of the Tajpur port project in the government’s budget speech this year, opposition parties in West Bengal were quick to take a dig at Banerjee’s government. Clearly, this budget presentation was a departure from budget speeches of the past few years in which the Tajpur port had featured prominently. In addition, Banerjee’s pointed remarks against the group’s chairperson Gautam Adani, pertaining to questions of exposure of India’s financial institutions to the beleaguered business group, have added fuel to the political speculation.

    Speaking at an event in Howrah city near Kolkata earlier this month, Banerjee obliquely referred to Adani as an Adaa’r Byapari, which literally means ‘a ginger trader’ in Bengali language but is a colloquial derogatory term used for petty operators. This occurred barely a year after her widely publicised meeting with the business tycoon to procure financial investments in West Bengal.

    ‘Where do you (the common people) keep your savings? Many in the LIC [Life Insurance Corporation], many in housing investments, many in banks… Where is all that money going? The money is going to the home of the Adaa’r Byapari [ginger trader],’ Mamata said at the event in Howrah.

    Nevertheless, notwithstanding its rout in the stock market, the Adani Group has reportedly made clear its intention to proceed with the Tajpur port project.

    Following the budget speech, made by the state’s finance minister Chandrima Bhattacharya in the legislative assembly on 15 February 2023, Opposition political leader, Suvendu Adhikari, pointed to the conspicuous absence of Tajpur. The only mention of the port project pertained to the proposed construction of an economic corridor linking the port with Raghunathpur township on the state border with neighboring mineral-rich Jharkhand. The economic review report of West Bengal for the financial year 2022-23, which was presented by the state government in the legislative assembly on the same day as the budget speech, contains a reference to Tajpur Port regarding a Letter of Intent.

    In the budget speech for the previous financial year, Bhattacharya had enthused about how the port project would be the harbinger of economic prosperity for West Bengal.

    The under-construction bridge at Soula along the Digha-Mandarmoni marine drive. Ostensibly for tourism, the road could be the first phase in the industrialisation of this stretch of coast.

    ‘The proposed deep-sea Tajpur Port, a first of its kind in the state, is another large infrastructure project conceived as a long-term initiative for development of alternative seaports and integration of port-rail-road infrastructure for the creation of sustainable logistics infrastructure in the state. Over 1000 acres of land have been identified for developing the Port Project. It will harness huge logistics potential, attract further investment in allied infrastructure and industrial development and provide employment opportunities to a large number of our youth,’ the minister stated in last year’s budget speech.

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  • published Adani's coal-based community conflicts in India in Blog 2023-02-02 15:12:41 +1100

    The forgotten people in Adani's agenda of coal exploitation in India - a list of community conflicts

    The Adani Group's colossal agenda for exploiting coal has created community backlash across the length and breadth of India. Indigenous people, traditional land-users and fishing communities have bravely tackled Adani's plans in order to defend their livelihoods and way of life. They have protested on land and at sea; in villages and in cities; on the streets and in the forests. This compilation gives details on 14 epicentres of conflict that have arisen from Adani's exploitation of coal in India.

    Here is a link to the PDF:




    The Parsa Kente coal projects in the Hasdeo forests (Chhattisgarh)

    Adivasi (indigenous tribal) women block tree-cutting operations for the proposed expansion of the Adani-operated PEKB coal mine, Chhattisgarh, India.

    For each of the Parsa Kente coal projects, Adani is the Mine Developer and Operator (MDO) on behalf of a Rajasthan power company that owns the mining leases. The projects threaten the biodiverse Hasdeo forests, home to elephants that become vulnerable and dangerous when their habitat is fragmented.

    Adivasi (indigenous tribal) people rally before marching over 300 km to the state capital in October 2021 to protest at proposed coal mines in the Hasdeo forests, Chhattisgarh, India.

    Protests to defend their lands, livelihoods and culture by Adivasi (indigenous tribal people) have been occurring for many years and include a 300-km march from the forests to the state capital in October 2021. The conflict has led to splits within the state government and between the state and national government. The one operating mine, the PEKB coal mine, has overcome all obstacles despite community opposition. In 2022, the community mounted peaceful direct-action protests against works to expand the PEKB mine. In June 2022, the state government said that works are ‘on hold’, but subsequently tree-felling resumed for the PEKB extension.

    Status: 1 operating mine, 2 under development

    Adani companies: Adani Enterprises Ltd., Parsa Kente Collieries Ltd.

    Community organisations: Hasdeo Aranya Bachao Sangharsh Samiti (HABSS) – the Save Hasdeo Forest Committee; spokesperson Jainandan Singh Porte. Chhattisgarh Bachao Andolan; spokesperson Alok Shukla.

    Media stories:

    The New Yorker November 2022 

    New York Times October 2022

    AdaniWatch March 2022

    AdaniWatch November 2021

    AdaniWatch November 2021

    AdaniWatch October 2021

    AdaniWatch June 2020

    Guardian Australia March 2020

    And many more.


    Gare Pelma II coal mine (Chhattisgarh)

    Adivasi protesters march against new coal mines in Chhattisgarh.

    For the three Gare Pelma coal projects, Adani is the MDO. In June 2019, over 100 villagers protested at a meeting initiated by Adani, saying that 13 villages could be destroyed. Further protests occurred in October 2019. Reports have found that people inhabiting this region of densely packed coal mines and coal-power stations suffer serious illnesses.

    Status: 1 operating mine, 2 under development

    Adani companies: Adani Enterprises Ltd

    Community organisations: Mehnatkash Majdoor Kisan Ekta Samiti, spokesperson Rajesh Tripathi

    Media stories:

    AdaniWatch May 2021

    ET Energyworld June 2019


    Talabira II and III coal blocks (Odisha)


    Adivasi (tribal) inhabitants of the Talabira area in the threatened forests on which they depend.

    For the Talabira II and III coal projects, Adani is the MDO. Facing displacement are 1894 families from six villages. Some say their consent to mining was forged. Forests that have provided sustenance were destroyed in 2019, leading to civil disobedience. On 8 March 2022, 13 men were arrested for resisting dumping of overburden. Talabira I is disused but its waste degrades adjacent farms, leading to a community petition to the National Green Tribunal and a fine against the Adani company concerned.

    Status: Talabira I mine now disused; Talabira II and III coal blocks under development

    Adani companies: Adani Enterprises Ltd; Adani subsidiaries Raipur Energen Limited and Talabira (Odisha) Mining Private Limited (TOMPL)

    Community groups: Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air – Director Nandikesh Sivalingam; Dilip Sahu, a social activist; Hemanta Rout, local freelance journalist

    Media stories:

    Al Jazeera June 2022

    AdaniWatch July 2022

    AdaniWatch May 2022

    AdaniWatch April 2022

    AdaniWatch January 2022


    Gondulpara / Gondalpura coal block (Jharkhand)

    Residents of one of the villages threatened by Adani's Gondulpara (sic) mine protest in defence of their lands and livelihoods.

    The misnamed Gondulpara coal block was ‘acquired’ by Adani Enterprises in November 2020. People from at least five affected villages in the Gondalpura area have resisted Adani’s attempts to commence preparatory works and acquire their land, angrily confronting officials. India’s peak body has called for the Gondalpura / Gondulpara coal project to be scrapped. Villagers have so far out-manoeuvred Adani and the state in their attempts to hold the meetings necessary for the approvals process.

    Status: Under development

    Adani companies: Adani Enterprises Ltd

    Community groups: National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM)

    Media stories:

    Times of India October 2022

    AdaniWatch November 2022

    CounterCurrents March 2022

    AdaniWatch January 2022

    Le Monde November 2021

    AdaniWatch October 2021

    AdaniWatch September 2021

    (List of conflicts continues below)

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  • published Perceived Climate of Impunity in Blog 2023-01-30 12:39:34 +1100

    Hindenburg revelations point to perceived climate of impunity


    27 January 2023

    AdaniWatch Responds to Hindenburg Report: ‘A Perceived Climate of Impunity’

    AdaniWatch has scrutinised the activities of the Adani Group and related businesses for over three years.

    The revelations contained in the Hindenburg report are consistent with a pattern of corporate misconduct observed over those years. But the report and initial response to it miss a crucial context that should bear on the thinking of businesses, citizens and governments: Adani is not working alone.

    This photo of (now) Indian PM Narendra Modi using an Adani aircraft during his 2014 election campaign has become a thing of notoriety.

    Geoff Law, Coordinator of Adani Watch, said: ‘Gautam Adani is in some sense a leading business partner of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. If the allegations are true, they are just another example of what happens when crony capitalism and regime favouritism create a perceived culture of impunity.’

    This culture extends well beyond the scope of the Hindenburg report. Both the Adani Group and other regime-allied businesses require far closer scrutiny.

    ‘India has enjoyed a pass largely on the fact that it’s not as bad as Russia or China. But the world needs to wake up to the plight of Indian democracy and governance before it’s too late to reverse dangerous trends,’ Mr Law added.

    Democracy, freedom of the press, governance and environmental protection in India are on a downward slide. Image Geoff Law

    Adani Watch intends to continue monitoring and exposing the harmful effects of the Adani Group on people and the planet. Adani, the richest man in Asia, multiplied his wealth from an estimated 7 billion USD to an estimated 120 billion after Modi became India’s Prime Minister in 2014. (The crash in Adani’s share prices of 27 January is said to have reduced Mr Adani’s ranking to seventh richest and his fortune to USD 93 billion.)

    Mr Adani is sometimes called ‘the King of Coal’ and has a colossal agenda for new coal mines and coal-power stations in India, exacerbating climate change and displacing thousands of indigenous people. Adani’s extraordinary closeness to the current Indian government is a matter of global environmental concern.



  • published The elephant in Adani’s room in Blog 2023-01-24 09:09:09 +1100

    The elephant in Adani’s room

    The status of a new elephant reserve in central India could determine whether dozens of coal projects go ahead. The biodiverse Hasdeo forests, home to tribal people such as the Gond, are threatened by a slurry of proposed coal mines. The forests are also home to the endangered Asian elephant, and the recently declared Lemru elephant reserve has put the coal industry, including the Adani Group, on notice.

    Hundreds of elephants roam the Hasdeo forests in the central Indian state of Chhattisgarh. According to government sources, central India holds 10% of India’s total population of about 27,000 wild elephants.

    Locations of Chhattisgarh and the Hasdeo forests.

    However, as more development proceeds in these forests, encounters between rural people and elephants increase in frequency. Such encounters can be deadly – both to humans and to pachyderms. Various reports based on government data say that 325 people and 70 elephants were killed during encounters in Chhattisgarh between 2015 and 2019.

    This situation can only worsen if proposed coal mines (including Adani’s) in the Hasdeo forests proceed. The 1800-square-kilometre expanse of forest is said to occur on top of over five billion tonnes of coal. An international data base says that the Hasdeo forests contain 23 ‘coal blocks’ – major deposits of coal, each of which would support at least one mine. If these huge excavations proceed – along with all the associated roads, working camps and powerlines – the Hasdeo forests will become utterly fragmented and more and more elephants and villagers will come to grief. A recent documentary highlighted these threats to the elephant’s existence in states such as Chhattisgarh.

    'Beware - elephant affected zone': Forest Department warning sign in Chhattisgarh.

    One means of dealing with these conflicts is to declare an elephant reserve. Across India as a whole, more than 25 elephant reserves have been established since the 1990s. They cover some 58,000 square kilometres and contain a population of over 20,000 elephants. The reserves do not have the status of national parks. Traditional activities of the Adivasi (indigenous tribal people such as the Gond) can continue within elephant reserves, where there is a strong emphasis on managing human-wildlife conflict. Various forms of development are allowed within the reserves. However, the explicit recognition of an endangered species is supposed to inform prescriptions applied by governments.

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  • Women’s-rights campaigner in India acquitted after wrongful imprisonment for two years

    On 5 January 2023, well known indigenous-rights campaigner, Hidme Markam, was released from Jagdalpur Central prison. She had been wrongfully incarcerated by the Indian state of Chhattisgarh since March 2021. This followed her wrongful arrest – effectively an abduction – by the Chhattisgarh police. After nearly two years in prison facing five serious charges relating to sedition, she finally had her day in court and was acquitted of four charges and released on bail regarding the final charge. But will she be compensated by the state of Chhattisgarh?

    As far as the police and the state government are concerned, the incarceration of Hidme Markam served its purpose. Her crucial work representing indigenous women had been successfully interrupted.

    There has been no indication yet from either the police or the Chhattisgarh government whether Hidme will be compensated for her abduction and incarceration. There has not even been an apology.

    On 9 March 2021, Hidme had been speaking at a gathering of women for International Women’s Day in the district of Dantewada, educating women about their rights in a region beset by strife between state and Maoist militia groups. One of the causes of the conflict is mining.

    One of the controversial local mining projects being opposed by indigenous people is the proposed Bailadila iron-ore mine, of which the Adani Group is the developer. To the tribal inhabitants of the area, a local feature, Nandiram Hill, is a sacred site threatened by the proposed mine. Conflict has arisen over this and other mines, leading to the involvement of the police and other state para-military forces in Chhattisgarh. Such groups have been accused of gross violations of human rights, particularly against women.

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  • Adani high up on Oxfam list of world’s carbon-emitting billionaires

    In November 2022, Oxfam released a report quantifying the carbon footprints of the investments of the world’s billionaires. Gautam Adani came close to topping the list. Six of his group’s companies were documented as emitting a carbon equivalent total of almost 30 million tonnes per annum. These greenhouse gases are spewed into the Earth’s atmosphere by Adani’s coal-power stations, gas installations and coal mines. Adani’s ports and railways add to this toxic toll by transporting colossal quantities of coal.

    According to Oxfam’s website, ‘the world’s richest people emit huge and unsustainable amounts of carbon and, unlike ordinary people, 50% to 70% of their emissions result from their investments.

    ‘New analysis of the investments of 125 of the world’s richest billionaires shows that on average they are emitting three million tonnes a year, more than a million times the average for someone in the bottom 90% of humanity.

    ‘The study also finds billionaire investments in polluting industries such as fossil fuels and cement are double the average for the Standard & Poor 500 group of companies. Billionaires hold extensive stakes in many of the world’s largest and most powerful corporations, which gives them the power to influence the way these companies act.

    Carbon-emitting smoke stack of Adani's Udupi power plant, India.

    ‘Governments must hold [these billionaires] to account, legislating to compel corporates and investors to reduce carbon emissions, enforcing more stringent reporting requirements and imposing new taxation on wealth and investments in polluting industries.’

    The spreadsheet accompanying the report lists the following Adani companies with the following carbon footprints arising from their investments. (The spreadsheet can be found by clicking on ‘English data file’ beneath the ‘Download File’ option on the website.)


    Name of billionaire


    Carbon footprint (kTCO2 equivalent)

    Billionaire’s share of ownership

    Gautam Adani

    Adani Power



    Gautam Adani

    Adani Transmission



    Gautam Adani

    Adani Enterprises



    Gautam Adani

    Adani Ports and SEZ



    Gautam Adani

    Adani Total Gas



    Gautam Adani

    Adani Green Energy







    Oxfam’s spreadsheet, when ordered according to the carbon footprint of each enterprise, has Adani Power as third on the list, its emissions exceeded only by China (where it seems that no particular billionaire could be identified), and by ArcelorMittal, the company of Indian steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal.

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  • published Is Adani the world’s most thin-skinned tycoon? in Blog 2022-11-09 09:02:59 +1100

    Is Adani the world’s most thin-skinned tycoon?

    In September 2022, Gautam Adani briefly surpassed Jeff Bezos to become the world’s second-richest person. He is now a permanent fixture amongst the top ten richest men on Earth. Adani’s personal net worth is said to be US $147 billion. He’s the richest man in Asia. His close links to Indian Prime Minister have become a thing of notoriety.

    Gautam Adani is lionised by an army of acolytes in India. A gushing biography of him, published by Penguin, is said to be ‘a compelling business story and portrait of one of the most influential men in India right now.’

    Backed by a colossal fortune and the accolades of millions, you would think that Mr Adani would feel secure enough to brush off criticism. However, it seems that behind Mr Adani’s ever-smiling visage is a hyper-sensitive, thin-skinned personality that feels the need to squash critics of his Group's operations.

    Tweeting about the relationship between Mr Adani and India's Prime Minister Modi is one of the subjects of an Adani defamation case against a freelance journalist.

    This is best illustrated by the growing number of defamation cases mounted either by Mr Adani or by companies that are part of his Group against Indian journalists and media platforms. The latest of these is a lawsuit filed in August 2021 in Mr Adani’s home state of Gujarat against Delhi-based freelance journalist Mr Ravi Nair. This case came to light in July 2022.

    According to the complainant company, Adani Enterprises Limited, Mr Nair has used Twitter to issue a number of comments with ‘the sole intent to tarnish the image of the complainant company and creating panic and chaos amongst the shareholders and investors’.

    The tweets themselves are described in the complaint as ‘scandalous, frivolous, misleading, derogatory, libellous and defamatory’ that have allegedly been posted ‘wilfully, mindfully, deliberately and with such intent that it will be read by the public at large on social media’. (Adani seems to be highly indignant that posts on social media are intended for public consumption.)

    Adani Enterprises Ltd claims to be concerned that this ‘series of strenuous tweets’ will ‘blemish the image, goodwill and reputation of the complainant company and the Adani Group’.

    The melodramatic language employed only serves to pique one’s curiosity about what has actually been said in these tweets. Has Mr Nair accused the Adani Group of indulging in slavery or drug-trafficking? Has Mr Adani been described as an axe-murderer?

    Hardly! In fact, the vast majority of the 26 offending tweets consist of the usual sort of commentary found in public discourse about political developments in a democracy. According to Adani’s complaint, the number of ‘likes’ pertaining to these tweets number in the hundreds, with the number of re-tweets generally numbering in the dozens. Most refer to attached stories published by the mainstream media.

    Ravi Nair, a freelance journalist and contributor to AdaniWatch, has been subjected to a lawsuit by an Adani company because he has tweeted stories critical of the Adani Group and/or the Modi government.

    However, towards the end of the series of offending tweets, there are four that refer to articles written by Mr Nair himself and published by AdaniWatch. Two of these pertain to the controversial Pench coal-power development in Madhya Pradesh; two pertain to the rather shadowy group of offshore investors in various publicly-listed Adani Group companies. The complaint itself, in fact, refers to a ‘defamatory article’ about these offshore investors published by AdaniWatch. Given that the complaint was filed in court the very next month, one wonders whether it is Mr Nair’s work for AdaniWatch in July 2021 that forms the main motivation for the court action.

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  • Villagers at Gondalpura out-manoeuvre Adani coal company in game of cat and mouse

    An intense game of cat and mouse is being played out between an Adani coal company and villagers in the north Indian state of Jharkhand. Adani intends to obliterate dwellings, fields and forests with a giant coal mine and is attempting to go through the motions of acquiring land from the residents. However, the villagers have responded by refusing Adani’s financial inducements, attending meetings in force, rejecting Adani’s demands, blocking access for Adani contractors, and even physically ejecting Adani officials from the area.

    The neighbourhood of the north Indian town of Gondalpura faces an existential threat. An Adani company is proposing to excavate 300 ha of the land for a coal mine (misnamed ‘Gondulpara’). Residents of five villages will be displaced if the coal mine proceeds.

    Villagers rally to defend their farms, forests and way of life from a giant Adani coal project at Gondalpura.

    The Gondulpara (sic) coal block in the state of Jharkhand was ‘sold’ to Adani Enterprises Limited (AEL) as part of a huge auction initiated by the Modi government in 2020. The people who live there were not consulted.

    Subsequently, residents of the villages of Gondalpura, Gali, Balodar, Hahe and Phulang have been attending village meetings and rallies, chanting:

    jal, jangal, jamin hamara hai = water, forest, land are ours

    jal, jangal, jamin, bachao = save our water, forest and land

    company wapas jao, wapas jao = company go back, go back

    'Adani company go back!' has been the cry of villagers defending their homelands from the giant Gondulpara (sic) coal project.

    To gain government approval for the mine, Adani has organised a series of formal meetings. This is ostensibly a means of acquiring community approval; in reality it’s a devious way of faking it. The people are only too aware of the way in which these formal processes can be steamrolled by companies, contractors, government officials and police. They have responded with a well-organised effort to head off any bogus approval for a mine that, if it proceeds, will destroy their livelihoods and way of life.

    This rundown of recent events gives an idea of the cat-and-mouse game that has played out amongst the fertile fields of Jharkhand.

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  • Journalist hit by arrest warrant due to Adani defamation move

    The Adani Group has mounted a defamation case against freelance journalist Ravi Nair who is based in Delhi. Nair has been a frequent contributor to AdaniWatch. The complaint against Nair was filed in the court of Gandhinagar in Adani’s home state of Gujarat and is dated 19 August 2021.

    Adani’s case against Nair ostensibly pertains to 26 tweets, but his hard-hitting contributions to AdaniWatch also feature in Adani’s complaint. The vast majority of the tweets clearly constitute expressions of opinion on matters already in the public domain.

    The Delhi Union of Journalists condemned this attack on Nair. In a media release referring to Nair’s case and another, the union said ‘these attacks constitute a continuum of attacks and threats to independent journalists and journalism in India today’.

    In the month preceding the filing of Adani’s complaint, Nair had authored stories on the Group’s troubled Pench coal-power project and on the shadowy players involved in offshore investors in Adani companies. The content of these stories was compelling. Adani Enterprises Limited has not explicitly included these AdaniWatch articles as part of its complaint, but the timing of the case and the innocuous nature of the material on which the complaint purports to be based suggest that the AdaniWatch stories constitute a significant part of the motivation behind Adani’s defamation case against Nair.

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  • Protests put the wind up renewable-energy companies in Gujarat

    The mass installation of wind turbines in the Indian state of Gujarat is causing havoc for pastoralists, animals and the ecology. Because much of the land in question has been officially categorised as ‘wasteland’, the usual controls on development do not apply. Protests by traditional users of the land have already prevented one company from completing a wind-energy project. Will Adani be the next culprit?

    According to a report in Mongabay, the district of Kachchh in the north-western Indian state of Gujarat has been targeted for wind-energy development because of its favourable geology and climate. The report quotes an Indian wind-energy authority’s assessment that Gujarat has the capacity to produce over 22% of India’s wind energy.

    The lands intended for the erection of wind turbines are not uninhabited. Though arid, they are the traditional pastures used by generations of pastoralists. The thorny scrubland provides habitat for species such as the desert cat, hyena, fox, nilgai, spiny-tailed lizard and desert monitor.

    A typical Gujarat mosaic of semi-arid farmland and communal woodlands. Image Google

    According to the Mongabay report, these woodlands have been officially mis-categorised as ‘wasteland’ by India’s national forest department. This means that provisions designed to protect forest habitats from unregulated development do not apply.

    As a result, natural vegetation and even hillocks have been flattened to make way for wind turbines. Local people are aghast. They are losing important grazing land and forest resources. The area’s cherished peacocks have been electrocuted by the dozen. Noise pollution has plagued some settlements.

    When protests against these incursions occurred in 2021, one of the companies concerned abandoned work on its unfinished wind turbines.

    Adani Green Energy Limited has gained approval for development of wind turbines in the area but has yet to commence construction. Gujarat is the home state of the Group’s founder, Gautam Adani, and the massive conglomerate is used to getting its way when it comes to controversial port expansions and coal-power stations. It remains to be seen whether the Group will respond any differently when it comes to local concerns about the impacts of industrial-scale wind power.

    AdaniWatch supports the development of renewable energy in India but unless proponents such as the Adani Group's companies consult meaningfully with the local people affected, the entire industry could be brought into disrepute.

  • Is Adani complying with court order to save Great Indian Bustard from transmission lines?

    A directive by India’s highest court could affect recent works by Adani on large solar-power installations in the state of Rajasthan. The court has directed the state to file reports on the progress in complying with an order made last April to place new power lines underground. The measure is required to protect the Great Indian Bustard, an endangered species that requires the arid grasslands of Rajasthan for its survival. It is believed that at least one major solar-power project in Rajasthan has not complied with the directive.

    Adani has a number of solar-power projects in Rajasthan. In August 2021, protests broke out against a solar project’s alleged encroachment on to tribal grazing lands. The offending entity was alleged to be a joint venture between Adani Green and JV Rajasthan Solar Park Company Limited, a corporation owned by the Rajasthan state government.

    A protest in 2021 against the alleged encroachment of an Adani solar-energy joint venture on to ancestral grazing lands. Image Down to Earth

    Recently, the Supreme Court directed Rajasthan to file its compliance reports with last year’s directive regarding power lines and the Great Indian Bustard. ET Energy World has reported environmentalists saying that Rajasthan officials could be ‘in a fix’ because at least some power lines were believed to have been erected above ground.

    The court’s ruling arose from a public-interest case seeking to protect the Great Indian Bustard from lethal electrocution caused by collisions with power-transmission cables. Such deaths are a significant threat to birds. A government study found that five birds per kilometre of power line die every month in the desert region. For a critically endangered species such as the bustard, every human-induced death pushes it closer to extinction.

    The Supreme Court ruled that in notified parts of the bird’s habitat, all future power-transmission cables, including those that would serve an Adani solar installation, are to be laid underground.

    Now, the Rajasthan government has to explain to the Supreme Court how (or indeed, whether) it has complied with this order. If the transmission lines associated with new solar arrays have been installed above ground, there could be penalties that affect the viability of these projects.


  • Call for international finance boycott after Adani says it will self-finance coal port

    International finance companies have been urged to cut ties with the entire Adani Group due to its practice of financing controversial coal operations with funds from other Adani entities. This is how Adani has sidestepped what is effectively an international financial boycott of its Carmichael coal project. Revelations that Adani will self-fund the refinancing of its Abbot Point coal port have prompted the call to cut ties.

    This story is sourced from a post by climate-campaign group Market Forces.

    According to a note published on 14 March, the Moody’s ratings agency has indicated that the Adani Group has told the agency that an external finance company will not be refinancing US $500m of bonds issued by its Abbot Point coal port. Instead, the funds will come from within the Adani Group. The US $500 million worth of bonds mature in December 2022. They help pay for Adani’s lease of the North Queensland Export Terminal (NQXT). 

    NQXT (rebranded from Adani Abbot Point Terminal) is the port via which all coal mined from the Adani Carmichael coal mine will be exported; it is therefore an integral part of the notorious Carmichael project.

    The infamous Carmichael coal project has been opposed by cultural elders from the Wangan & Jagalingou people such as Adrian Burragubba.

    According to Moody’s, Adani plans to self-fund the refinancing. ‘Moody’s understands from NQXT’s management that the bonds will be refinanced via a drawdown on a subordinated shareholder facility, which is being funded by its sponsor’. In plain English, this means that Adani is planning to refinance the debt with funds from within the wider corporate structure of the massive Adani Group.

    The Adani Group is a sprawling conglomeration of businesses engaged in ports, airports, real estate, palm oil, logistics, agriculture, power generation, solar energy, power transmission and, of course, coal mining. Analysts say that financing of any of the Group's companies helps free up funds for operations that would otherwise struggle for finance - such as the Carmichael mine and its associated coal port at Abbot Point.

    Adani’s purchase of a 99-year lease for the port from the Queensland government in 2011 was debt-funded, and it has since struggled to refinance that debt on several occasions. The Moody’s note also says that Adani has already contributed US $359 million to NQXT since 2020, mainly for the refinancing of previous maturing debts for which it was unable to raise external funds.

    Coal trains en route from the Carmichael coal project to Adani's NQXT port have been blockaded by courageous climate campaigners. Image Anna Brozek @anna.ontheground

    It is not known from where this cash originated before being paid to NQXT via its Singapore-based sponsor, and it is not known from where exactly within the Adani conglomerate these new funds will come.

    (Story continues below)


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  • published Tour de Carmichael May 2022 - call for participants in Blog 2022-03-28 09:23:04 +1100

    Tour de Carmichael May 2022 - call for participants

    Coedie McAvoy, son of cultural elder Adrian Burragubba, has made the following call for participants in this year's 'Tour de Carmichael', a five-day cultural tour on pushbikes through country impacted by Adani's destructive Carmichael coal project:

    Waddamuli wanggarrayn! Hello everyone!

    Ngadyu narri Coedie. My name is Coedie.

    As a Wangan and Jagalingou man, I invite you to come to my Country.

    The 2022 Tour de Carmichael will run from 23 to 27 May on the lands of the W&J people.

    I am writing to you from Waddananggu, where we have occupied Wangan and Jagalingou homelands for over six months now, opposite the Adani/Bravus Carmichael mine pit.

    For over 200 days and 200 nights we have been re-occupying our land. Despite Adani’s attempts to remove and antagonise us, we have continued our cultural ceremony unhindered. And we have made history – our rights to practise our culture on a mining lease have now been recognised under Queensland human-rights laws.

    I am inviting you to join me on my homelands for the Annual Tour De Carmichael – Cycle for Country on Wangan and Jagalingou land from Monday 23rd to Friday 27th of May 2022.

    The 2021 launch of the Tour de Carmichael - this year's event promises to be even bigger.

    Tour De Carmichael is not a protest but a guided cultural tour on pushbikes. Come and learn about the significant sites and how they relate to Wangan & Jagalingou people. We will be holding cultural workshops at different campsites at the end of each day.

    Tour De Carmichael - Cycle for Country

    WHAT: 5-day, 100-km guided cycle tour led by me, Coedie, son of Adrian Burragubba, to learn about Wangan and Jagalingou culture and see what’s at risk from Adani’s destructive mega coal mine. The tour is family friendly and is working with the Queensland Police Service to provide a safe environment. We will have support vehicles driving behind that can carry water, food and camping gear.

    WHEN: Monday 23rd May – Friday 27th May 2022.

    WHERE: Wangan and Jagalingou country in central Queensland. The bike ride begins at the corner of the Gregory Highway and Elgin Road, with the finish line being the Waddananggu ceremony in front of the Adani Carmichael mine pit. We will be stopping at different camps along the way to break up the Tour.

    (Story continues below)

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  • Formal Complaint lodged with Securities and Exchange Board of India re de-listing of Adani Power Limited

    In December 2021, Mahua Moitra MP submitted a formal complaint to the Board in which she alleges that there are reasonable grounds for the Board to investigate whether the Adani Group has breached securities laws. Meanwhile, the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) has been examining Adani's proposed de-listing of Adani Power Limited for more than eight months.

    Adani Power Ltd (APL) is one of India’s largest producers of coal-based power. It is headquartered in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, the home state of the founder of the Adani Group, Gautam Adani.

    In June 2020, APL announced that it planned to de-list from the Indian stock exchange through a voluntary buyback of shares by Group company Adani Properties. The objectives given were that the delisting would:

    • Allow Adani Properties gain total ownership of Adani Power.
    • Improve APL’s strategic, operational and financial flexibility.

    At the time, holdings in APL by Adani Group entities stood at just under 75%, with just over 25% being held by ‘public shareholders’. Under the law, a minimum of 25% of any public company must be owned by public shareholders – that is, shareholders not owned by the company’s promoters.

    It was reported that the board of APL set Rs. 33.82 per share as the floor price for APL shares – a price reported as being 11% below the then market value.

    An Adivasi farmer at his family grave plot. Just over the fence, on land taken from the Adivasi, is the massive Godda coal-fired power station, being built by a subsidiary of Adani Power Limited. Photo Geoff Law

    According to the complaint, APL required a two-thirds majority vote in favour of the delisting from its independent shareholders (who constituted just over 25% of all shareholdings). On 24 July 2020, it was reported that the necessary majority of shareholders had given a green light to the delisting.

    However, in 2021 the delisting was put under a cloud by a number of developments.

    In June 2021, there was a dramatic crash in the value of shares of six Adani Group companies, including APL, following reports of a freeze on three Mauritius-based investment funds with significant holdings in the Group companies concerned. The Adani Group described the report as ‘blatantly erroneous’ and the share prices generally bounced back. However, this episode led to revelations about some of the Group’s investors.

    Community leaders opposing the proposed Pench coal-fired power plant protest after several of them were bashed, allegedly by people associated with the Adani Power Limited subsidiary responsible for the project.

    On 19 July 2021 junior finance minister Pankaj Chaudhary stated under Parliamentary privilege that SEBI was investigating several Adani Group companies regarding compliance with securities laws. At the time the company denied being in receipt of any recent enquiries from SEBI.

    In addition, questions were raised over the credibility of certain foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) in Adani Group companies, including APL. In two stories for AdaniWatch, independent journalist Ravi Nair described the complex lines of ownership and association between some of these ‘shadowy offshore investors’ and various dubious operators. Some of these foreign portfolio investors (FPIs), or foreign institutional investors (FIIs), are based in tax havens such as Mauritius and Cyprus.

    One of these AdaniWatch stories was cited by Moitra in her December 2021 complaint to SEBI.

    Mahua Moitra MP cited AdaniWatch stories on the convoluted corporate structure of various investors in Adani companies in her complaint.

    Amongst other things, Moitra alleged:

    • APL’s public shareholding was ‘murky’, with FIIs holding 12.7% of the company – a very significant part of the minimum public shareholding of 25%.
    • That many of the FIIs had a very high proportion of their assets invested in Adani companies such as APL, with little variation in this proportion over the years.
    • APL had negligible percentage of holding by Domestic Institutional Investors such as mutual funds, which are known to be vigilant on behalf of their ‘small-time investors’.

    Moitra‘s compliant urged SEBI to:

    • Order an immediate investigation into the ownership of the Foreign Institutional Investors (FIls) which hold significant public shareholding in APL;
    • Reject the de-listing proposal made by APL;
    • Impose fines and penalties on APL for any critical violations of the SEBI Regulations in accordance with SEBI’s powers;
    • Take appropriate action for any proven violations of the SEBI Act and SEBI Regulations.


  • Peak body calls on Indian Government to scrap Adani coal project at Gondalpura

    India’s peak body representing civil society has called on the Modi Government to cancel Adani’s approval to obliterate villages in the Gondalpura area for a massive coal mine. The proposed coal project, mis-named Gondulpara by Adani, would destroy five villages as well as associated farmland, forest and watercourses. Inhabitants of the area have repelled attempts by Adani and the government to do preparatory works on the coal project.

    The National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM) has expressed support for struggling villagers and demanded withdrawal of a proposed coal-mining project in the state of Jharkhand in order to protect farms, forests and biodiversity. In a statement, NAPM said the proposed Gondulpara coal mine ‘is likely to obliterate over 500 hectares of farms, dwellings and forests, generating over 229 million tonnes of solid waste. At least five villages including Gondalpura, Phulang, Hahe, Balodar and Gali would be affected adversely by the project.’

    A scene of village, forests and fields near Gondalpura, an area threatened by a huge Adani coal mine.

    NAPM said it is distressing that governments have paid no heed to the grave concerns raised by the indigenous villagers who are keen to safeguard local resources from destruction.

    The Gondalpura coal block, with an estimated 176 million tonnes of coal reserves, was acquired by Adani Enterprises Limited (AEL) in November 2020 as part of the Modi Government’s controversial auction of 41 coal blocks.

    Villagers gather to oppose Adani's 'Gondulpara' coal project. Various Adani officials have been run out of town.

    Attempts were made by the company to gain environmental approvals and to initiate project work in the midst of the second wave of the pandemic. Surveyors sent to Gondalpura were reportedly chased off by the villagers on a couple of occasions in the latter half of 2021. The villagers of Gali and their forest-protection committee also formally objected to proposals of the government seeking consent for preliminary works in December 2021.

    (Story continues below)

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  • Adani told to identify contractors allegedly scared off by threat of actions by Ben Pennings

    Last week, climate campaigner Ben Pennings gained a tactical victory in his tussle with Adani in the courts. A judge of the Queensland Supreme Court ordered Adani to identify those companies that had allegedly stopped negotiating for works on the Carmichael mine project due to the prospect of non-violent direct action by Galilee Blockade.

    The relevant Adani company has alleged that an unspecified number of contractors terminated their negotiations on the project, thereby costing the company money. Since November 2020, Ben Pennings has been asking Adani to specify those contractors so he could be appraised of the case he needed to defend. Adani had previously been criticised for its 'attack dog legal strategy', seeking to organise a raid on Pennings's home, and organising surveillance of Pennings's young family.

    The court previously said that Adani must be able to identify ‘the class of individuals or organisations in respect of which these fractures have occurred’ and that provision of the information ‘would at least provide [Pennings] with the sort of focus that will allow him to discharge his obligation of disclosure’.

    That was confirmed by the court on 10 March 2022, in orders which require Adani to identify, by April 8:

    • the identity of those contractors (or sub-contractors);
    • the negotiations that would have been undertaken or were terminated;
    •  details of the demands and threats that allegedly led to the contractors terminating negotiations.

    Adani's Carmichael coal project has provoked one of the biggest environmental campaigns Australia has seen. Image Flickr

    ‘After all this time, I’m so happy that Adani has to identify which contractors they allege backed out of their dirty coal project due to the peaceful actions of Galilee Blockade,' said Mr Pennings. 'Adani specified in court they plan to seek documents from contractors through the non-party disclosure process. I hope this information progresses the case so that I can win this important legal battle against a multi-billionaire bully.’

    ‘This is all happening at a time when the impacts of coal and climate change are literally flooding the east coast of Australia. New coal mines mean further climate chaos.’

    ‘Adani were awarded some costs for some parts of the 27 August 2021 hearing. Adani has previously sought an exorbitant amount and that costs process is ongoing. So far, I have not paid a single cent of Adani’s legal costs.’

    From a media release by Ben Pennings, 10 March 2022.

  • published London museum claims on Adani sponsorship refuted in Blog 2022-02-17 08:37:56 +1100

    London museum claims on Adani sponsorship refuted

    The Coal Action Network in the UK has taken on the London Science Museum over its sponsorship deal with Adani. A ‘green energy gallery’ is to be sponsored by Adani Green, leading to a string of protests outside the museum. Members of the museum’s board of trustees have also resigned in protest.

    The Science Museum Group has attempted to defend the sponsorship. However, in a message to supporters, the Coal Action Network has refuted the arguments of this body and its spokespeople in strong statements reproduced below:

    The Science Museum Group stated that it ‘respects the rights of all people and is committed to engaging the public on climate change.’

    Indigenous Adivasi people of India's Hasdeo forests march in protest against Adani's proposed coal mines in their ancestral lands. Image Vijay Ramamurthy.

    The claim that the Science Museum Group (SMG) respects Indigenous rights is laughable. The scale of human-rights abuses the SMG is supporting through its sponsorship deal with Adani directly contradicts any claim to this.

    During a BBC Front Row interview, the museum's Director Ian Blatchford was asked to respond to comments made by Adrian Burragubba, a Traditional Owner of land who opposed Adani’s Carmichael mine in Australia, that ‘by putting this company on a pedestal, the Science Museum is complicit in Adani’s violation of our Human Rights and destruction of our ancestral lands.’

    An ad van with indigenous elder Adrian Burragubba rejecting Adani's Carmichael coal mine during a protest outside the London Science Museum

    Blatchford decided to defend Adani’s coal business by dismissing Burragubba’s comments, questioning their validity, and suggesting that they were exaggerated: ‘Well, Adani and their coal interests in Australia do get accused of a whole variety of things, but the company would push back very strongly on those accusations… So, although you’re quoting one voice, I would not say that that is a definitive intervention on the issue, because we’ve thought about two things: not only [Adani’s] response to that and the truth of it – and there is certainly a great tendency for some campaigners to exaggerate very significantly those issues – but also we’re looking at other voices.’

    A protest supporting indigenous W&J rights against the Adani Carmichael coal mine.

    In response, Indigenous people sent a letter to the Science Museum Group calling on its leadership to listen to Indigenous peoples’ concerns about its new sponsorship deal. The letter received a swift response from Dame Mary Archer, Chair of the Science Museum Group’s Trustees. Did she listen to the concerns raised? Her critics say ‘no’.

    She begins by trying to shift responsibility: ‘Your letter makes some very specific allegations about the activities of Adani Mining. I feel that these are questions for that company, and also the relevant national governments.’

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Wilderness conservationist, author and bushwalker, partner of Amanda Sully, father of Elliott. 2010 Churchill Fellow.