STATE TIMES NEWSJAMMU: Former President, Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCI) Jammu, Y V Sharma on Saturday expressed deep anguish at few unpleasant happenings in the city during ongoing corona situation. Complementing corona warriors in form of medical fraternity, security forces, police and employees of essential services, he said that some elements in the administration are bringing bad name to the services of these warriors, who are working tirelessly even at stake of their lives. Referring to business, industry and service sectors, he opined that they were the worst sufferers during lockdown but even during partial lifting of lockdown, they are being treated in a shabby manner. “Business, trade and industry sectors were practically shutdown without any prior notice but nobody complained taking cognizance of nationwide crisis. There were huge expectations that the government will come to the help of suffering businessmen so that they can maintain their families along with families of their employees and huge workforce employed by them. But these days, shopkeepers, small-traders, footpath vendors and daily-wage earners are being harassed in one way or another,” he asserted. “Traffic problem in Jammu is known to everyone. The parking slots which were announced, started and were expected to get ready three or four years back, are yet to see the light of day, but the administration, instead of giving some concession for its own delay, is creating all sorts of hurdles in the working of businessmen and common people,” he said, adding that as public transport is off the road, people are using their own vehicles. But, shopkeepers, traders and customers are being denied parking in Bazaars. “Recent banning of parking at Residency road has triggered massive protests. Whenever someone parks his vehicle in front of some shop, a notice is pasted on his vehicle regarding fine for wrong parking. You cannot expect an already distressed person to park his vehicle some Kilometers away and then walk back to buy something,” he added. The former CCI President said, “In J&K, political activity is suspended due to absence of an elected Government. People have no channel to express their woes. The rising cost of living and freezing sources of common man, especially of small businessmen, are a cause of greater worry. The administration expects people to restart their enterprises without getting any cash assistance from the Government, even when the Central Government itself has announced to put on hold all developmental activities announced in Union budget upto March 2021, due to resource crunch. Extraordinary conditions need extraordinary solutions. But the adhoc decisions being taken without taking into confidence the stakeholders and then suddenly withdrawing the same, often create a sense of panic, fear, doubt, chaos and uncertainty among people.” Sharma further emphasised that trade, business and industry sectors are wealth creators and backbone of country’s economy. “Instead of putting them into problems, the administration should provide them all possible help and support to re-establish themselves. According to all reports and predictions, the war against corona is going to be long drawn. To address problems of businesses, to assess their losses and to provide immediate cash assistance, a high-powered committee headed by a senior Advisor should be constituted at the earliest, which should regularly interact with eminent businessmen, office bearers of various trade organisations, industrial and service-sector associations. The committee should be empowered to take immediate decisions for avoiding unnecessary hassles and formalities,” he suggested. Sharma appealed to the Lt Governor for ensuring that people during the crisis should be treated with kindness, sympathy, compassion and due dignity so that they can lead their lives with confidence, safety and security because common citizens are ultimately the asset of a country and deserve a better deal. “Businessmen contribute to the health of economy by paying taxes and providing jobs to millions. Conducive conditions should be created to bring back the situation, as far as possible, existing before arrival of corona pandemic,” he maintained.
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