Along with the Rs.1,350 crore economic relief package, electricity and water bills will now be cut by 50% for one year in Jammu and Kashmir. Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha came forward with the announcements on Saturday, September 19. The Atmanirbhar Abhiyan benefits will apply simultaneously too.
The economic package is largely for the business community of Kashmir. Hence, it covers small and medium enterprises and the tourism industry, which suffered a lot due to the pandemic.
Steps under the new economic package for Kashmir
Borrowers from the business community will receive a 5% interest subvention for six month of this financial year. Hence, it will likely increase the employment rate.
For the handloom and handicraft industry, the maximum limit under the credit card scheme is Rs.2 lakh instead of Rs.1 lakh. Moreover, they will get a 7% interest subvention.
The J&K bank also plans on launching a special desk for youth and women enterprises on October 1. It will also set up a custom health-tourism scheme for financial assistance to people working in the tourism industry to provide them with good repayment and pricing options.
Then, for residents of Kashmir, water and electricity bills will be cut by half for which the government plans to send Rs.105 crore. Also, all borrowers are still exempt from stamp duty till March 2021.
Industrial policy to be announced
Meanwhile, a new industrial policy is yet to be announced. After Article 370’s abrogation in 2019, the industrial sector of Kashmir suffered greatly. Therefore, it requires a new policy to get back up and running. The government is also trying to build a structured package for transporters, drivers, auto-drivers, house boat-owners and shikara wallas.
Sinha also praised the committee, with KK Sharma at its head, that handed in a report within 12 days so that they could plan for the relief package. He went on further to say that this package was only the beginning, and more would come along.
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