'LG's package a good beginning but disproportionate to J&K's losses'

Welcoming the Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha’s Rs 1350 crore economic package for revival of ailing business sector, Apni Party President Altaf Bukhari on Saturday said though a good beginning has been made, the Centre needs to be liberal in its financial assistance to J&K in view of the magnitude of shattered economy.

“Since the Lt Governor has announced this package today, we will go through it before making some opinion. However, according to estimates made by the chambers of commerce and industry, J&K has witnessed a loss of over 40,000 crore since August last year. The government of India needs to keep this whooping loss into consideration if it is serious in revival of our ailing economy,” Bukhari said, while addressing media here.

He demanded a comprehensive job policy to address rising unemployment in J&K. “It is highly unfortunate that instead of generating more employment, J&K government has rendered around 3,000 engineers jobless by abolishing the Self Help Group scheme. It needs to be revived again. Similarly, the government must go for immediate regularization of daily wagers, daily-rated workers, casual workers, workers on consolidated wages, ITI skilled labourers, HDF workers and contingency paid workers,” he said, and pressed for early absorption of Rehbar-e-Khel aspirants on the pattern of ReTs.

Bukhari also demanded registration and issuance of license to more than 25,000 qualified pharmacists and medical assistants who have completed their course before August 5 last year.

Highlighting the plight of Kashmiri Pandit community, Bukhari laid emphasis on fast-tracking of recruitment for the PMs Migrant Employment Package so that the sufferings of the community were lessened.

On the restoration of 4G internet services, Bukhari said the government of India needs to look beyond “exaggerated security concerns” and provide high-speed mobile internet in J&K at an earliest.

Bukhari urged the government of India to consider inclusion of Punjabi as well as Gojri languages in the official languages announced for J&K recently.

He also called for abolition of SRO 202 and immediate repatriation of J&K employees from Ladakh while demanding revised and comprehensive policy on minor mineral rights for J&K residents.

Bukhari also spoke on restoration of passenger traffic on vital regional road connectivity links like Mughal Road and Kishtwar-Sinthan roads.

On the occasion, Faqeer Nath, former MLA from Chenani; Prem Lal, former MLA from Hira Nagar and Rakesh Kharyal, a retired bank officer and son of Jatinder Dev, a five-time MLC joined Apni Party.

Welcoming the entrants, Bukhari said their joining will further strengthen the Apni Party at the grassroots level.