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Recover or be ready for closure, JK Cements told

Srinagar, Dec 30: J&K Government has directed the authorities at JK Cements Limited (JKCL) to make a comprehensive plan for the company’s revival or be ready for its closure.

JKCL was set up three-decades-ago for producing quality cement at reasonable prices and generating revenue for the state.

However, it production, and along with it the revenue, has drastically slumped over the years.

Advisor to Governor, K K Sharma, recently held a meeting with the authorities of JKCL where he expressed concern over its heavy losses.

“Managing Director JKCL was directed to make a comprehensive plan for its revival or be ready for its closure,” a source privy to the meeting, told The Kashmir Monitor.

“The authorities were warned that if they failed to make it a profitable public sector undertaking then it has to be closed down as JKCL has become a burden on the state exchequer,” the source said.

JKCL is 100 percent state owned PSU, in which 98 percent of the shares are with the governor and 2 percent with commissioner secretary industries and commerce, who is the administrative head of the company.

According to JKCL accounts department figures, the company is facing a huge liability of over Rs 180 crores.

Here is the breakup of this huge liability: A pending term loan of Rs 46 cr, Rs 29 cr of pending bills of raw material suppliers, Rs 28 cr of pending sixth pay commission arrears, Rs 10 cr of pending salary of employees for four months, unpaid GST of Rs 30 crore, unpaid electricity dues of Rs 9 crore, CP fund of employees deducted from their salaries but not deposited amounting to Rs 20 cr, and retirement dues and gratuity of Rs 9 crore.

Managing Director, JKCL, Atul Sharma, said they have started a process to make a “comprehensive” plan for its revival.

“There will be Rs 100 crore project for revival of JKCL including upgradation of machinery and clearing part of the liabilities,” Sharma told The Kashmir Monitor.

“I have already submitted Rs 20 crore project to the government, while Rs 15 crore project is in the pipeline,” he said.

JKCL was incorporated as a fully owned government company in December, 1974 with the objective to exploit the abundant deposits, make the quality cement available to the consumers at reasonable rates, besides filling up the gap between demand and supply.

The cement plant of 600 tonnes per day capacity installed at Khrew is listed as heavy sector industry which started commercial production in April, 1982. The company is manufacturing OPC grade 43 and has obtained license for manufacturing Fly Ash based blended cement from Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS).

JKCL provides employment to a staff of more than 1000 semi-skilled, skilled, specialised and super specialised people, directly or indirectly.