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Adv Sharma holds pre-budget consultations with Kashmir business Inc

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Srinagar, Dec 9: In a bid to facilitate industrial activity, businesses and trade by preparing more convenient budget for 2019-2020, Advisor to Governor, Kewal Kumar Sharma today held a pre-budget consultation with the stake holders of Kashmir division.

Principal Secretary Finance, Navin Kumar Choudhary; Commissioner Sales Taxes, P K Bhat; Excise Commissioner Talat Parvez Rohella, Additional Commissioner, Sales Taxes, Manzoor Ahmad Bhat, Deputy commissioners of various units of Commercial Taxes and Excise departments and others were present during the consultations.

On the occasion, Advisor Sharma met with the various forums representing different sectors including Industrialists, hoteliers, manufacturers, traders and others and listened to their suggestions in order to come up with the more convenient budget.

 

Various suggestions were received from representatives of Kashmir Traders and Manufacturers Association, Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries, Kashmir Brick Manufacturers Association, Kashmir Hotels and Restaurants Association, Kashmir Hotels and Restaurants Owners Federation, Kashmir Economic Forum, Bread Manufacturers Association of Kashmir, Cold Storage Association and Federation Chamber of Industries Kashmir.

Besides, the representatives from Education Sector, tourism, Agriculture, Horticulture, tour and travel operators, Industrial Estates Zakura, Industrial Association Rangreth and others also put forward their suggestions while requesting Advisor Sharma to incorporate them in the upcoming budget.

The representatives of Kashmir Traders and Manufacturers Association requested for formulation of budget for few power projects which will be owned by the state, saying, this will help in further adding to the financial stability of the state to a greater extent. They also called for inclusion of Petrol and Diesel under GST. The representatives urged the Advisor to relieve the handicrafts from the domain of GST.

These representatives also brought to the notice of Advisor that various promises with regards to the GST have been made to the people but are yet to be fulfilled adding to the increasing concern to the business fraternity. They also demanded that there should be proper awareness with regard to the process and issues under GST.

On the occasion, Advisor Sharma directed the concerned officials to setup the training centers in every district where the businessmen can get themselves acquainted with the knowhow of the GST. In these centers training will be given about all the basics of GST including how to file a return, he added.

The demand for constitution of the GST Advisory board in the State also came up during the discussion.

The representatives from the Private schools demanded that the government should identify the place in Kashmir which can be later developed as the education hub. Around 2000 crore rupees is spent by the Kashmiri students to study in various parts of the world outside Kashmir, the representative said.

The issue of not implementing of Amnesty Schemes for industrialists and hoteliers including waiving off of interest, penalties and charging of power tariff at par with industrial rates for industrialists and hoteliers announced in the State Budget 2018-19 was also discussed by various representatives.

Transporters said that the transport sector is in very bad shape and demanded special focus on its betterment.

While calling tourism one of the huge employment generating sectors, the representatives from tourism sector demanded establishment of an agency to look into the wrong and negative perception given through media about Kashmir.

Advisor Sharma gave a patient hearing to the suggestions by various stake holders and assured the delegations that their submissions will be given a thorough deliberation for inclusion in the State Budget to achieve better results on ground.

 

 

 


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Kashmir

Scientific waste disposal continues to remain a challenge in Kashmir

Hirra Azmat

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Srinagar, Jan 18: The authorities have not been able to strike a balance between the increased tourist inflow and the scientific disposal of garbage, official documents reveal.
“Being a popular tourist destination, issues pertaining to solid waste are on the rise in the state and need to be addressed immediately,” reveals the Housing and Urban Development (H&UD) department’s 2018 draft action plan for solid-waste management.
It says that sold waste generation has witnessed an increase of over 8 percent in a decade.
“The Central Pollution Control Board report estimates that a total of 400 metric tons of waste is generated per day in Srinagar, 62 percent of this waste is organic in nature while the remaining is inorganic including 7 percent of plastic waste,” reads the document.
An official of H&UD department said that given the rapid urbanization and growing population, this sector (waste management) needs immediate attention.
“The valley’s non-dumping options to manage waste have also shrunk drastically. Burning waste no longer seems viable because of environmental concerns and poor segregation of waste. Compost plants are not doing well because manure doesn’t sell, and again becomes garbage,” the official said.
With population of 12.36 lakh, spread over an area of 294 sq km on both sides of Jhelum, not even a single residential area or commercial establishment in Srinagar has the facility of segregation of solid waste, and much of the waste is dumped into water bodies including Dal Lake.
“Civic bodies blame residents for not segregating the waste but what’s the point when everything will eventually be mixed-up? Segregation by residents will only work when the municipal bodies have complete door-to-door waste collection system and trash pickups have separate containers for dry and wet waste,” the official added.
He said for segregation, greater civic awareness was a must.
“But municipalities must also set up the infrastructure and notify their solid-waste management policy under the 2016 rules. So far, it has remained confined to papers only,” the official said.
A recent report by NITI Aayog ‘Report of Working Group II, Sustainable Tourism in the Indian Himalayan Region (IHR)’ too revealed that waste management was a huge challenge in Jammu and Kashmir and will become much more threatening as the number of tourists grows.
J&K fares poorly, with 0.14 gm per capita per day solid waste generation, the second worst in IHR region after Mizoram.
The state has faced repeated censuring by National Green Tribunal.
J&K has witnessed a mushroom growth of tourism infrastructure around water bodies, with little or no concern for the former’s impact over the latter.

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90s massacres: Joint Hurriyat calls for shutdown on Jan 21, 25, and 27 in Kashmir parts

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Srinagar, Jan 18: The Joint Hurriyat Leadership on Friday called for shutdown in Gaw Kadal, Handwara and Kupwara to mark the anniversaries of three massacres that took place in January 1990 in these areas.
The Joint Hurriyat comprising Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq and Yasin Malik, in a statement asked people to observe complete shutdown in Gawkadal, Basant Bagh, Chota Bazar, Budshah Chowk and adjacent areas on January 21 (Monday).
It also asked people to observe shutdown in Handwara and Kupwara areas on January 25 and 27 respectively on Handwara and Kupwara massacres anniversaries.
“Carnage at Gaw Kadal, Handwara and Kupwara remind us of Indian brutal occupation and oppression. Illegal Military occupation followed by such massacres symbolizes callousness under the garb of so-called democracy. The nation of Kashmir is indebted to martyrs who laid down their lives for freedom and resistance leadership pledges to continue this struggle till the achievement of the sacred goal,” the statement said.
Joint Hurriyat said Kashmir is “indebted to martyrs who laid down their lives for freedom and resistance leadership pledges to continue this struggle till the achievement of the sacred goal.”
“Days like 21st, 25th and 27th January 1990 remind us of the sacrifices rendered by our dear ones. These are the days for reiteration of our commitment towards the sacred mission and today while recalling these great sacrifices we reiterate our pledge to take forward the task of martyrs till the achievement of the desired goal,” they said.

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Kashmir

Fruit growers, dealers association meets Governor

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Jammu, Jan 18: A delegation of The Kashmir Fruit Growers and Dealers Association, from Sopore led by its president F A Malik, met Governor Satya Pal Malik at the Raj Bhavan here on Friday.
The members of the delegation requested that the KCC loans of farmers be waived off on account of damage to the horticulture crops due to unexpected hailstorm.
They also requested that unhindered movement of fresh fruits outside the State be allowed.
“They also requested sanctioning of adequate funds for development of Fruit Mandi at Sopore; installation of High Mast Lights at Fruit Mandi Sopore and enroute from Sopore Bye-Pass to the Fruit Mandi; availability of quality pesticides and Tree Spray oils at genuine rates; construction of a fly over from Chakrodaykhan up to Hakim Sonaullah Hospital and Fruit Mandi; sanctioned railway track from Baramulla to Kupwara be routed from Amargarh Sopore station with a station in vicinity of Fruit Mandi; construction of a truck terminal at Tulball, Sopore and revival of juice plant at Doabgah,” a Raj Bhavan Spokesperson said.
Governor assured due consideration of their demands.

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