Kashmir Unrest: Indian companies suffer losses in billions 

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Srinagar:  National and multi-national companies operating across India have been incurring losses in billions due to prevailing Kashmir unrest. Despite being a consumer state, there is meager influx of commodities from different Indian states to Kashmir Valley. 

Senior Vice Chairman Kashmir Economic Forum and renowned industrialist Jan Muhammad Koul told news agency CNS that if current situation will prevail for many more days in Kashmir the State Government too will incur a loss of Rs ten thousand crores that it earns from traders in the form of Value Added Tax (VAT). “It is not a one sided affair but the continuous shutdown in Kashmir has been badly affecting the national and multinational companies operating across India. Even the unrest in the Kashmir valley has brought Jammu’s economy to its knees, with every sector,be it industry, trade, hotel or tourism have been facing worst economic crisis,” he said.

 “Less than 25 per cent of goods from outside State have been arriving in Kashmir these days. The import of bananas, Noon Chai, Lipton tea, mutton, soaps and other commodities have considerably diminished. The Rs Billion trade of ‘Tweed’ between Kashmiri businessmen and outside companies from Amritsar and Gujrat has almost stopped. Not a single bundle of tweed has arrived in Kashmir so far. Tweed that people of Kashmir use during winters used to arrive in Kashmir beforehand, but this time the Gujrat and Amritsar companies have badly suffered due to present unrest in Valley,” Koul said. 

 “Similarly Rs 360 crore Banana trade, Rs 700 crore mutton trade, Rs 265 crore ‘Noon Chai’ trade and Rs 200 crore Lipton tea trade has badly hit due to unrest and the outside companies have been feeling the heat. The Kashmir unrest has jeopardized the employment opportunities of thousands of Indian labourers in these companies,” Koul added. 

Responding to a question, Koul said that Industrialists of Kashmir do business on profit basis. They import goods to earn some profit and when they stop importing, they will not incur huge losses. “It is finally the supplier that incurs losses and all the suppliers are from Indian states. So, to say that Kashmir unrest has taken a toll on Kashmir only is factually incorrect,” he said adding that companies like Hindustan Liver Limited, ITC, Procter & Gamble and others have completely lost the markets in Kashmir. 

Jan Muhammad Koul said that Kashmir being a consumer state is a market of trillions where demand for goods goes up with every passing day.

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