Majid Kapra

Kashmir Inc urges separatists to come up with alternative to regular shutdowns

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Srinagar, Dec 06: Seeking an alternative to shutdowns, Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry Thursday appealed the separatist leadership to play its role to end sufferings of the business community in Kashmir.

Addressing media at the Chamber office here, KCCI chairman Sheikh Ashiq also asked the State and the Central government to create a “congenial” atmosphere for smooth business activities in the Valley.

“Yes there must be an alternative to shutdowns also as the business community continues to suffer; it is for the separatist leadership to decide a suitable alternative to routine strikes,” said the KCCI president.

Condemning the arrest of several trade leaders by police in the wake of separatists’ call for protests ahead of the World Human Rights Day, the KCCI chairman said the government should provide them space to hold peaceful protests to highlight rights abuses in Kashmir.

Sheikh claimed every sector, be it horticulture, floriculture, art and hotel industry, continue to face problems which needs to be addressed at the earliest.

“We have been sacrificing but satisfied; our only concern so far is to end human rights violations in Kashmir; we cannot afford this situation anymore. So the government, keeping in view the overall conditions here should create conducive atmosphere in the valley,” he added.

Citing example of 18-months-old Hibba, whose one eye was seriously injured due to pellets recently, KCCI chairman said such incidents depict the sorry affairs of the administration which is required to bring an end to the rights violation in Kashmir.

The business leader also said there should be no restrictions on peaceful protests highlighting the grim situation of the Valley. He said KCCI will be holding a peaceful march from Chamber office at Residency Road to Press Enclave on Saturday against the human rights violations in Kashmir.

“Government should allow peaceful protests because chocking the space for peaceful protests is suppression, which in no way is beneficial for any society that believes in democracy,” said he.

Sheikh Ashiq further said the business community has been under great stress on account of repeated turbulences in Kashmir. “We don’t get favorable atmosphere of conducting business on account of these impediments and our all sectors are affected badly.”

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