Srinagar, Dec 4: During the recent past Jammu and Kashmir administration has been focusing on reviving the ailing business sector which has taken a massive hit during the past two years.
A businessman while talking to Precious Kashmir said, “During the past few months the helmsmen have been meeting the traders from all the sectors. They have been seeking feedback from us and we are being assured that something or other will be done for us so that we can stand on our own feet again.”
The businessman said that the meetings which the representatives of the traders’ fraternity have held with the government till date have been fruitful. “No one ever told us that this won’t be done. We have always been told that all our demands will be met and new life will be infused in the ailing economy of Kashmir,” he added.
According to the figures that have been presented by the various bodies of traders since August 5, 2019, thousands of people, who were associated with different trades and businesses have lost their livelihoods in Kashmir during all these months. “Businessmen in Kashmir took two back to back hits, first it was the closure of everything after the revocation of J&K’s special status. The restrictions and the shutdown continued from August 2019 till November in that year. As soon as the revival was about to take place the COVID-19 pandemic broke out and it led to every activity across the globe coming to a grinding halt,” said an observer.
He said that the biggest setback which the businessmen suffered between August 2019 to January 2020 was the complete shutting down of the internet in the Valley. “During the past few years, internet has become the lifeline of every business across the world and Kashmir is no exception. The blocking of internet had choked the very lifeline of the economy in Kashmir. Soon after the internet was restored economy started limping back to normal. The lifting of the COVID-19 lockdown too has led to revival of the businesses to a great extent. Things are moving these are no longer halted. Buying and selling are taking place. The COVID vaccine is coming and within a few months the threat of pandemic will be over,” the observer added.
He said that if the government really wants to do something for the businessmen it should do something about the loans which these people had taken during the normalcy times. “During the past 2-years interest on these loans has got accumulated. The government should come forward and share a portion of the interest burden. It can prove to be a big respite for the traders,” the observer said.