Healing the ailing economy
There is finally some good news for business sector of the Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir with the administration constituting a high-level committee for working out a proposal for relief and revival of the business sector. In a significant move, the UT administration on Tuesday constituted a panel headed by advisor K.K Sharma and comprising of Financial Commissioner, Finance, Commissioner Secretary Industries and Commerce, Commissioner Secretary, Tourism department and Chairman/Managing Director J&K Bank. The panel would hold discussions with business associations and submit a consolidated proposal for consideration of the government at the Union Territory and at Central level by September 1, 2019. The decision of setting of the panel has come after a delegation of Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries met with the Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha. During the interaction the delegation apprised the Lt Governor about a range of concerning issues of the prominent business sectors including industries, hospitality, handicrafts sector, houseboats, tourism, private schools, apple cold storage, young entrepreneurs etc.
It is pertinent to mention here that the business sector in Kashmir has taken a bad hit and following August 05, 2019 decisions of the union government and subsequent restrictions and lockdowns coupled with the Covid-19 restrictions, this entire sector has been in a shambles. Following August 05, 2019, there has been almost zero tourist footfall in Kashmir and thus those related with the industry – transporters, houseboat owners, hoteliers, pony wallas, guides, people associated with handicrafts have suffered a lot. Then the early snowfall in November last year broke the backbone of horticulture industry as apples and apple orchards worth billions got damaged. While people were hoping that following the winters, the businesses may get back on tracks, the pandemic dashed all the hopes.
In this backdrop, the UT administration has to come forward to help the ailing economy to breathe. The Lt. Governor understands that trade and industries are the major impact sectors for the economic development of any region. His decision of establishing a panel to discuss the related issues with concerned stake holders is an appropriate one. The administration needs to come to the rescue of the business community in a big way and come up with effective measures to develop a conducive environment for the development and growth of industrial and business sector in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.