Kashmir Centre for Social and Development Studies (KCSDS) urges the state administrative council (SAC) headed by the Governor to revoke all policy decisions taken by it during past five months which are fraught with long-term serious implications for the autonomy of the state.
The KCSDS statement said that in an urgent meeting the members observed that the decision to convert Jammu and Kashmir Bank into a public sector undertaking is aimed at making it subservient to the imported bureaucracy for its final demolition as has been done by it to other PSUs of the state.
“Quoting example of J&K State Power Development Corporation (JKSPDC), the members said that because of the dilly-dallying tactics and lack of timely decisions by concerned bureaucrats, this potentially viable corporation, to earn profits and provide electricity to the people, has been ruined. Because of the bureaucratic bias, SICOP and SIDCO incepted with the objective of promoting industry have been converted into blood sucking leaches for the entrepreneurs. The fate of all other corporations is well known to the public, the onus of which could squarely be put on the shoulders of these bureaucrats besides other officials,” the KCSDS statement said.
“KCSDS members further observed that Jammu and Kashmir Bank is the only bank in the state that continued to flow credit to the economic sectors when all other 46 out of 47 banks operating here shun their operations to a larger extent particularly in the valley. It is only because of this bank that some sustained livelihood opportunities are generated in the private sector besides agriculture and its allied sectors despite unfavorable business environment with more than 2200 days of business interruptions during past 28 years,” it said.
“KCSDS views the decision of SAC as a disempowering conspiracy against Kashmiris to cripple them further economically after an all-out assault on them by the state militarily, psychologically and socially. After having failed to sell and establish the links of ongoing rights movement with hawala and black money transactions, GOI now ridiculously thinks that the J&K Bank is responsible for sustaining the movement, observed the members,” said the statement.
“KCSDS is of the opinion that J&K bank needs lots of reforms to maintain transparency but at the same time the decisions of the bank need to be independent of bureaucratic wrangles and complexities. Whereas bringing the bank under Right to Information Act has been demanded by the society for long, however, this needs to be implemented by an accountable legislature after due discussions and not by the Governor’s administration.”
KCSDS in a statement lambasted Delhi for its choice of the Governor appointed for the state who has proven to be working on the advice and instructions of New Delhi. Such a person can in no way be trusted for exhibiting fairness in policy decisions taken along his few nominated advisors. The members observed that some of the decisions taken by SAC during the past five months are detrimental to the integrity and interests of the state. The members said that whereas extending unbridled powers to the LAHDC undermines other institutions of state administration besides adversely affecting the political integration of the state, the decision to have a joint venture for Rattle power project hits the interests of the state economically. The governor administration cannot be giving a master plan for Gulmarg as the same has not been subjected to the scrutiny by public representatives.
KCSDS impresses upon the Governor to revoke all policy decisions and concentrate only on the day to day governance issues. He should know that he is temporarily governing the state at the moment and cannot behave like an autocratic ruler.