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‘New policy to create Rs 25,000-30,000 crore investment’: J&K L-G Manoj Sinha


SRINAGAR: The new industrial policy for Jammu and Kashmir that was announced in January last would generate an investment of Rs 25,000 to Rs 30,000 crore in the next two years and create as many as five lakh jobs, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha told this newspaper on Sunday.

Although a man of few words as he believes in his work doing the talking, the Lt Governor revealed that 25,000 vacant posts in government departments had been advertised and the recruitment process would be transparent.

Under a grey sky at Raj Bhawan’s guest lounge that overlooks the famed Dal Lake and the invigorating Tulip garden, Sinha described the Rs 28,400 crore outlay for the new policy as a massive initiative to usher industrial revolution in J&K.

Asked about the response of investors, he said, “We are getting good response. In fact, every day, we get calls from 4-5 investors exploring possibilities to set up units in J&K.”

After the hollowing out of Article 370 and 35A by the Centre on August 5, 2019, the J&K government had planned to hold its first Global Investors Summit in October that year but it could not be held due to various reasons.

That did not distract Sinha, who took over as second Lt Governor on August 5 last year, as he quickly picked up the threads to govern the arguably toughest administrative unit in the country. His result-oriented style of functioning appears to be drawing investors.

“We will give capital investment incentives. Those investing in Category A get 30% incentive while those in Category B get 50%,” Sinha said.

To ensure that incentives are properly utilised to set up industrial units, “our government will give them incentives only on GST billing,” Sinha added.

The GST linked initiative would amount to 300% of the eligible value of actual investment made in plant and machinery or building construction for 10 years. The J&K government has identified 24,000 kanals of land in different districts to set up industrial estates. It is, however, yet to be decided whether the land would be on lease or would the investors get proprietary rights.

Asked to quantify the total investment and the number of jobs the government expects to create, Sinha, a seasoned politician from Uttar Pradesh and a three-time MP, said, “Going by the huge response, we expect an investment of Rs  25,000 to Rs 30,000 crore in different sectors in the next two years. The investment will generate about 5 lakh jobs.”

On plans to launch a recruitment drive, he said, “The government has advertised 25,000 vacant posts in different departments so far.”

Assuring transparency in recruitment, Sinha said, “We have a comprehensive plan on filling government job vacancies. All recruitments will be done in the most transparent manner.”