COVID19: Altaf Bukhari demands interest subvention to help ailing economy

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Srinagar, Mar 27: While appreciating the emergency measures announced by the Reserve Bank of India, Jammu Kashmir Apni Party (JKAP) president Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari on Friday demanded interest subvention to provide a sigh of relief to the stressed and ailing economic sectors of Jammu and Kashmir.

In a statement issued here, Bukhari said the measures taken by the government of India may have provided a relief to rest of the country but these financial relaxations have offered no respite to the struggling businesses and industrial units that are almost defunct especially for the last one year in Jammu and Kashmir.

“While the emergency measures taken by the Union Finance Ministry are aimed at helping borrowers cope with the economic havoc wreaked by the Covid-19 pandemic, need of the hour is to offer interest subvention in J&K to address woes of its highly ailing economy,” he demanded.

Bukhari said that in view of the dying economic activity due to COVID-19 Pandemic, the union finance ministry should announce an extended moratorium of one year on term loans and the cut of date for Jammu and Kashmir for classification of accounts should be 31-07-2019 on all type of loan accounts, both small and large borrowers.

“There is a dire need for an economic package to counter the economic impact of the Covid-19 and all borrowers must be covered in loan restructuring so that their accounts are not declared as NPAs. There should be at least four quarter moratorium on all type of loans for Jammu & Kashmir and all repayment obligations should be suspended for this period,” the JKAP president demanded.

He said COVID-19 is proving a threat for almost all business units in J&K of becoming totally defunct. “This is why the interest subvention along with complete mortatorium of all repayments is much needed since businesses in J&K have already incurred huge losses since last year and most of units are not generating any considerable income at present,” Bukhari observed.

He said the already announced moratorium period is a first step for easing out the burden from traders and business community, but the union finance ministry must put in all efforts to provide interest subvention to important sectors like tourism, horticulture, agriculture, and  micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) manufacturing, amongst others, which will help to bail them out of the present precarious economic situation.

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