LOCAL INDUSTRIES ON REVIVAL

Mir Farhat

With local industries having been impacted in the decades long turmoil in the state, the government is planning to revamp and upgrade the industrial units for increased productions of goods and material to increase the revenue and generate employment for youth.Industries

Under the Jhelum and Tawi Flood Recovery Project (JTFRP) World Bank funded project, the Industries and Commerce Department has set rolling the revamping and upgradation of the four state-owned industries.

Beginning from the state’s traditional silk and woolen factories in Srinagar, the industries department will revive the Joinery Mills in Pampore and Bari Brahmna in Jammu. Rajbagh Silk Factory to be revamped at a cost of Rs 23.54 crore to increase the production of silk thread from 50,000 meters to 5 lakh meters annually.

The project is to be completed till December 2018. “The beneficiaries of the revamped factory will be cocoon growers, about 20,000 families, nearly 40 Reeling units, Weaving/ Finishing and other preparatory infrastructure, about 1000 persons, and 300 artisans,” said the Minister for Industries and Commerce, Chandra Prakash Ganga. Similarly, the Bemina Woolen Factory to be revived at a cost of Rs 11.74 crore, with the production of woolen thread to be increased from 75000 meters to 4.5 lakh meters per year. “The beneficiaries will be sheep owners, 50000 persons, about 1000 weavers,” Ganga said.

The two factories are using the second-hand machinery (looms and other infrastructure) which had been bought in 1938 by the Maharaja from Japan and since then the machines not been revamped. “The new machinery will be bought from the country and will be installed for increased production of thread,” he said. Besides, the government is revamping the Joinery Mills in Pampore in Kashmir and Bari Brahmna in Jammu.

“The two mills will be revamped and upgraded at a cost of Rs 8.50 crore each for producing larger craft items and goods. The profit of the two mills is projected at Rs 5.33 crore annually each year,” the minister said.

The products of these factories, ranging from silk and woolen clothes to wooden crafts, have a huge market in the state among local consumers and tourists across the country and abroad. The World Bank has sanctioned $250-million Jhelum and Tawi Flood Recovery Project (JTFRP) to cover reconstruction and strengthening of critical infrastructure, including roads and bridges, restoration of urban flood management infrastructure, livelihood in 22 districts of the state.

In addition, it has been drafted to strengthen the disaster risk management capacity and contingent emergency response. The Bank had approved the project on June 2, 2015, after Omar Abdullah- led NC-Congress government took up the matter with the Central government. The project is to be completed before June 30, 2020.

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