Help The Kashmir Monitor sustain so that we continue to be editorially independent. Remember, your contributions, however small they may be, matter to us.

Kashmir Inc sends SOS to govt as losses cross Rs 20K crore

Srinagar, Feb 26: Unable to endure further losses, Kashmir Inc. has sent an SOS to the government seeking immediate relief and tax concessions to revive the fledgling business in the valley.

More than 30 business organizations joined hands and issued a public appeal to the government for help in overcoming the crisis.

Those who have issued appeal include Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industries (KCCI), Kashmir Traders and Manufacturers Federation, Kashmir Hoteliers and Restaurant Owners Federation (KTMF) Kashmir Houseboat Owners Association (KHOA) and other business bodies.

Kashmir Inc said they have lost 1000 days of business since 2008. In 2019 alone, they have sustained Rs 20000 crore losses due to uncertainty post abrogation of Article 370

“The failures have been imposed on us due to the lack of management skills, sympathy, and concern,” they said.

 KCCI President, Sheikh Ashiq Ahmad said the business community was forced to file taxes at a time when the sector was witnessing zero activity.

 “The business sector in Kashmir is still bleeding and the government is insensitive towards it. Traders are compelled to file taxes like GST and others. There is no relaxation from the government,” he said.

 Taxes department data reveal that only 65 percent of the GST has been realized in the union territory. Only 58 per cent of Kashmiri traders have filed their GST returns so far.

  Ahmad said the blockade of broadband was proving a “death knell” for the business sector especially for handicrafts, e-commerce and tourism.

“We have been urging the government to restore 4G and broadband internet in Kashmir. It could prove a major relief for the handicrafts sector,” he said.

The tourism sector has borne the maximum brunt of the turmoil post-August 5.  “There is currently no investment in Kashmir’s tourism sector. After 2014, tourism is on a downhill in Kashmir,” said President, Jammu and Kashmir Tourism Alliance, Manzoor Pakhtoon.