The L&FS (Infrastructure Leasing and Financial Services) toxic bonds contagion has grown into a pandemic and now has hit Gujarat, the prime minister's (PM's) own turf which he nurtured so well for over a decade.
Information with IANS suggests that several top state-owned PSUs have been hit by the toxicity of IL&FS bonds. Unfortunately, the employee provident fund trusts of several such companies are largely invested in these bonds.
Gujarat Cooperative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF), or Amul as we know it, is one such major state-owned company infected by the virus. The Verghese Kurien brainchild with a turnover of $4.8 billion and a daily milk procurement of about 23 million litres from 18,700 villages has its staff provident fund trust invested in these bonds.
And that is where it doesn't end—the iconic Rs 6,309-crore revenue Gujarat State Fertiliser Chemicals has a similar story. Its EPF Trust appears to be compromised and contaminated. The extent of the malaise is, however, at this point not known, but that they have invested in what were once triple A-rated bonds is without doubt.
Unlike GCMMF, which is essentially a cooperative, GSFC is a publicly listed company with a market cap of Rs 4,120 crore as of Monday closing. It manufactures fertiliser and industrial chemicals. Here again, it is not known how many of its workforce have their EPF Trust exposure to toxic bonds.
Two other companies from Gujarat which are facing the same problem—Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilisers and Chemicals Ltd, where the EPF Trust has exposure to the bonds, and Gujarat Industries Power Co Ltd where the PF Trust has exposure.
Gujarat Industries Power Co was incorporated in 1985 as a public limited company under the auspices of the government of Gujarat. The company is engaged in the business of gas-based electrical power generation and has a total present installed capacity of 1,009MW.
GNFC is like GSFC a fertiliser and industrial chemicals company specialising in urea, calcium ammonium nitrate, ammonium sulphate et al. This company founded in 1981 is also listed on the BSE as a joint sector company. GNFC closed at Rs 326 on Monday with a market cap of Rs5,083 crore.
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