Kashmir Chamber concerned over plight of stranded people

Srinagar

Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) Sunday expressed concern at the plight of residents of Kashmir stranded in different places within and outside the country.

A spokesperson said the majority of these stranded people would usually return from mid-March onwards to Kashmir.

“Appreciable efforts were being put in by the government for the return of residents by the appointment of senior officers as nodal officers for various states but the process needed to be further refined in line with the huge volume of stranded people,” the spokesperson said.

He requested the government that for residents of Kashmir it was imperative to immediately shift the quarantine centre from Kathua to Srinagar as there were very disturbing reports of hardships being faced by people on their way home.

The spokesperson said in the holy month of Ramadhan, the rising temperature at Kathua creates further difficulties for the people.

“In any case, there seems to be no plausible reason to keep residents of Kashmir quarantined 400 km from home in hostile conditions,” said the spokesperson.

He said apart from huge number of stranded people in Jammu and other parts of the country, a large number of people were also stranded abroad in places like Qatar, Dubai, Bangladesh, Saudi Arabia and Thailand.

The spokesperson urged the government to arrange flights and devise a SOP for their return.

The KCC&I sought intervention of S Jaishankar, Union minister of external affairs for facilitation of return of residents directly to Kashmir.

The spokesperson also expressed concern at reports of harassment of employees by private companies including banks, insurance and other multinational companies operating in the Valley.

He said the KCC&I has received reports that many establishments have applied pressure on their employees by giving them business targets which were impossible to achieve in the current situation.

It is believed this was being done to manufacture excuses for salary and job cuts, said the spokesperson.

The spokesperson said that we are aware that the prevailing economic situation has adversely impacted operations and companies are facing mounting losses but the reduction of salaries or job cuts would further create chaos in the economy.

He appealed to the companies to be patient till the Government formulated a policy on the lines of the US Payroll Protection Loan through which funded around 700 Billion Dollars or some similar measure for the protection of jobs.

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