J&K performs poorly on BARP, is among the worst places to do business
File photo of stationed wooden boats (shikaras) on Dal Lake in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir (KM/Umar Ganie)
Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir has miserably failed in implementing Centre government’s Business Action Reform Plan (BARP) and has not even made it to the list of first 20 performing states of India.
The central government Sunday released BARP ranking, which highlighted performance of various states in implemented various polices to enhance Ease of Doing Business.
Jammu and Kashmir has ranked at 21st spot, much lower than its neighbouring states including Himachal Pradesh, Punjab and Haryana, which stood at 7, 19 and 16 slots, respectively.
Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Rajasthan West Bengal and Gujrat are ranked as top 10 states in the BARP ranking.
The parameters for attaining a BARP rank includes construction permit, labour regulation, environmental registration, access to information, land availability and single window system.
Interestingly, other hilly states including Himachal Pradesh and Uttrakhand, which have similar geographical features have performed much better in Ease of Doing Business by ranking at 7th and 11th spots, respectively.
In Jammu and Kashmir, the business sector has suffered immensely for the last one year. The business sectors in the erstwhile state were hit hard by the lockdown following the abrogation of Article 370 last year and COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
Trade particularly tourism, handicrafts and other retail businesses have suffered immense losses during the period, which the Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries estimated at Rs 40,000 crores.
Presidents KCCI, Sheikh Ashiq claimed that the spontaneous business losses have discouraged the aspiring entrepreneurs to invest in Jammu and Kashmir.
“Carpet exports fell by 50 percent, while tourism sector is witnessing no activity at all. For the last one year more than four lakh people have lost their jobs,” he said.
Earlier last month, Jammu and Kashmir had also shown dismissal performance in NITI Aayog’s Export preparedness Index 2020 by attaining bottom 36th rank.
As per the index, Jammu and Kashmir lagged behind in creating business, export environment, policies and attracting investments.
A zero rank was achieved by the Union Territory in labour reforms, number of investment summits, power cost and single window clearance, which also determine the ranking in BARP chart.
As per business associations, Kashmir faces more than Rs 100 crore loss with every day of shutdown, with sectors tourism and industries becoming major loss making bodies.