No harm would be done to JK’s special status: Govt
Announces to revisit industrial policy amid concern by stakeholders
KG News Desk
Srinagar, May 12: The Jammu and Kashmir government on Thursday said it would review the industrial policy, launched in March when the state was under Governor’s rule.
“It has come to our notice that there are some issues in the industrial policy for 2016 on which we feel there is a need for review. The chief minister and the deputy chief minister told me to convey that there will be a review of the whole policy and the Cabinet will take a final decision on it,” state government spokesman Naeem Akhtar told reporters here.
Akhtar, who is also the state Education Minister, said the decision to review the industrial policy was taken as the PDP-BJP government had to listen to the concerns of the people and rule out any apprehensions.
On whether the policy would allow non-state subjects to acquire land on lease for industrial purposes, Akhtar said no harm would be done to the state’s special status.
“That is what somebody has said. We do not want that perception to prevail that we are diluting the state’s special position, its special features, constitutional guarantees or legal position.
“The government of PDP and BJP is very firm and we have put it in our Agenda of Alliance that these are basic to our purpose of forming the alliance and the government. There will be no harm done to the special position of Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.
According to the Industrial Policy, 2016, launched under the Governor’s rule, in case of private promoters from outside the state (non-state subjects), J-K Small Scale Industries Development Corporation Ltd (SICOP) or J-K State Industrial Development Corporation (SIDCO) may with the prior approval of the state government acquire land through concerned district collector on behalf of the private promoter with the cost of land and agency charges as may be determined provided in full by the promoter.
It can lease it out on long term basis for 90 years (initially for a period of 40 years, renewable at the option of lessor for a further period of 40 years at a time, provided that maximum period of lease shall in no circumstances exceed 90 years) on mutually agreed terms and conditions, the policy states.
To a query about establishing composite colonies for Kashmiri Pandits, he said, “We have said this before as well that we are very keen to get our Pandit brethren back to the Valley with dignity, as part of the society, and there will be no compromise on that.
The minister said, “It (the industrial policy) was launched in Governor’s rule. The Governor’s administration must have done it in good faith but the representative government always has to listen to the concerns of the people. Basically, the policy is good but if there are any features that need to be relooked, we will do it.”
“There is no need to be alarmed. The government is conscious of the need for ruling out any apprehensions, so it will be reviewed,” the education minister said.
Governor N N Vohra had approved the Industrial Policy, 2016, formulated by the Industries and Commerce Department, in March this year when the state was under his rule following the death Mufti Mohammad Sayeed in January.
The minister said the state’s Industries Department has been asked to submit the policy to the state Cabinet.
“The cabinet will also decide if there is a need to add new areas in it like some of the sectors which can be accommodated like tourism, horticulture. It has to be more accommodative of the new possibilities and potentials in Jammu and Kashmir. We have asked the Industries Department to submit it to the Cabinet which will take a final decision,” he said.