Srinagar: Representatives of Valleys top Industrial bodies participated in a webinar session with Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday during which various demands were raised.
The session was organised by Satish Mahaldar, Chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Peace Forum.
A statement issued by Mahaldar of Peace foundation said Sitharaman told the participants that the Centre was keen to listen and understand the ground situation as that helped in formulating policies.
Union Finance Minister Sitharaman said that the Centre was keen to listen and understand the ground situation as that helped in formulating policies. She said, “We are interacting with all the stakeholders in the industry and we have been benefitted from this. We want to keep our ears close to the ground and based on the inputs from various stakeholders, policy changes are made.”
Mahaldar said the Valley-based business leaders had expressed willingness to help the youth of the “distressed” KP migrant community during the webinar.
During the session, the Finance Minister was aprised that how the PSU’s are in a dilapidated state due to the wrong and ill policies of erstwhile state governments. However, she has been briefed that PSU’s are still have potential to generate employment and contribute to economy of UT if professionally managed and adequately financed by the government. The lost glory of PSU’s and their viability can be restored if serious approach is applied by the government. The deficiency faced by different PSU’s were brought into the notice of Hon’ble Minister.
The Minister was requested to to strengthen RTC and increase its fleet upto the level of 1500 buses and the salary of employees of RTC needs to be exclusively arranged by the government in consideration of services offered by RTC. Hon’ble Finance Minister has also been apprised that RTC employees are without salary from last 4 months.
Sopore Industrial Association president Javaid Ahmad Bhat said, “PMC needs cold store chain with grading paking facility in each district to facilitate apple growers in every fruit Mandi as there is only one apple concentrator plant for three districts including Sopore, Kulgam amd Shopian.”
Honble Minister was informed that, Rs. 230 Crores grant in aid has been allocated and approved by the GoI for Forest Corporation but till date the said amount has not been released by the UT Govt and Employees are without salary from last 4 months. The Hon’ble Finance Minister was requested to Intervene as the most of Public Sector employees are without salaries.
Meanwhile, displaced Kashmiri Pandits (KPs) have urged the Centre to give economic incentives to the youth of the community so that they can set up businesses in the Valley. They said it would also help in facilitating their return to the Valley.