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news details
J&K Govt fails to assess impact on local industries
2/19/2020 7:22:46 PM
Early Times Report

Jammu, Feb 19: The administration of Jammu and Kashmir has failed to assess impact on the local industries after abolishing Toll Posts from entry points including Lakhanpur, Railway station and Airports.
After abolishing toll posts on December 31, “A high powered committee under the chairmanship of Advisor K K Sharma will interact with various stakeholders and suggest measures to improve competitiveness of local industry,” government announced.
Accordingly, the Government vide Order No.55-JK(GAD) dated January 9, 2020 accorded sanction to the constitution of a committee to assess the impact on local industry after abolition of Toll Post Lakhanpur and all other minor interstate Toll Posts and those established at Railway Stations and Airports.
The committee headed by Advisor K K Sharma and comprising of Financial Commissioner, Finance Department, Commissioner/ Secretary to Government, Industries and Commerce Department and Excise Commissioner J&K was asked to interact with the stakeholders and suggest measures to improve the competitiveness of the local industry.
“The committee, which will be serviced by the Finance Department, shall submit its report to the Government within one month”, the Government had mentioned in the order.
“Though one month time-frame given to the high-level committee lapsed on February 9, 2010 yet the panel has not submitted its report to the Government”, reported The Daily Excelsior quoting official sources while disclosing that only one meeting of the committee has been convened till date.
“We have not received even draft report of the committee so far”, sources in the General Administration Department said while admitting that measures are required to be taken to ensure that local industries don’t suffer following abolition of Toll Posts.
Though the decision to abolish Toll Posts was welcomed by various bodies in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir yet industrialists were opposed to the same on the ground that decision would be a death knell for the local industries.
Soon after the decision, the Bari Brahmana Industries Association (BBIA) had stated that this was an attempt to destroy the industrial sector of J&K which was working in spite of all the odds and facing militancy since last 30 years.
“There is stiff competition from the manufacturers/traders from outside the J&K due to additional cost of transportation of raw materials, locational disadvantages and shallow market”, the BBIA had mentioned in the statement, adding “the decision will also allow the import/export of unaccounted goods in/from J&K which may be resulting huge financial loss to the exchequer as well as to the industrial sector of J&K”.
Federation of Industries Jammu had also opposed the decision and stated: “The benefit of this will never go to consumer instead local industries will ruin”, The Federation had demanded that the Government should either compensate the local industry periodically or roll back the decision of abolition of Toll Tax.
“In order to ensure that there is no adverse impact of the decision on the local industries and their competitiveness is improved the Government should ensure that the high-powered committee submits its report as early as possible”, sources stressed.
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