The cross-Loc which began in 2008 , is being conducted via two routes in Jammu and Kashmir namely Salamabad in Uri and Chakan-da-Bagh in Poonch district.
As the deadlock continues over cross Loc-trade following arrest of a Pak-based driver for allegedly carrying narcotics, Governor NN Vohra Monday intervened and directed the officials to facilitate the traders presently unable to carry out the trade through Salamabad-Chakoti route, to conduct the business via Poonch route till the issue is resolved with PaK officials.
The cross-Loc which began in 2008 , is being conducted via two routes in Jammu and Kashmir namely Salamabad in Uri and Chakan-da-Bagh in Poonch district. However, the trade has been suspended on Salamabad TFC following the seizure of the drug by the police.
A senior official told Greater Kashmir that the Governor took stock of the situation and the Raj Bhawan officials held telephonic conversation with cross-Loc traders.
"Vohra was apprised about the losses incurred by the traders due to suspension of trade via Salamabad- Muzaffarabad route after PaK authorities detained 50 drivers from this side demanding release of a driver from that side held by the local police at TFC Salamabad on charges of carrying banned substances," an official said.
"The Governor directed the Financial Commissioner, Industries and Commerce, Khurshid Ganai to ensure that traders don’t suffer,” he said, adding that FC was further asked to explore possibility of facilitating the trade by the traders who were doing their business through Salamabad-Chakoti route, via Poonch- Rawalkote route till the issue was resolved.
Talking to Greater Kashmir, President, Jammu Kashmir Joint Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Y V Sharma said after taking up the issue with Governor, the FC I&C assured “us of allowing Kashmir-based traders to conduct their trade through Poonch.”
"The state government has already given clearance of allowing the trade through Poonch trading point. Now the state authorities will take up the matter with PaK DGFT and seek its permission on the matter," Sharma said, adding that it would depend on PaK officials whether they allow diversion of Salamabad trade from that point or not.
Sharma said they were also directed by the Governor to meet Home Secretary, Suresh Kumar regarding the issue.
Secretary, Salamabad- Chakoti Traders Federation, Hilal Turki said the suspension of trade via Salamabad-Chakoti is unfortunate as the “stray incident” has jeopardized interest of hundreds of people affiliated with this trade.
"The traders had stocked fresh fruits which were to be exported to PaK, but due to this incident our businesses been hit," Turki said adding that they had urged the Governor to save them for incurring losses.
The trade remained suspended for fourth consecutive day today.
Meanwhile stakeholders today reiterated their appeal to the governments of India and Pakistan asking them not to make intra-Kashmir trade a hostage to “stray incidents.”