Jammu suffers Rs 5,790 cr loss in 40 days of Amarnath agitation

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Jammu, Aug 10 (UNI) Jammu has suffered losses to the tune of Rs 5,790 crore during 40 days of ongoing agitation for restoration of forest land to Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB), pushing the region five to six years back economically.

Talking to UNI, Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCI) president Ram Sahai said the region had suffered huge loss, in 40 days of ongoing public movement for the restoration of land to the SASB.

''The main income generating tourism sector alone has incurred Rs 1,850 crore,'' Mr Sahai said, asserting that the industry will deteriorate further if the deadlock on Amarnath land row gets prolonged.

Sharing break-up of economical loss, the CCI president said the manufacturing and assembling units in the region have incurred loss of Rs 2,500 crore while the agriculture sector has suffered losses to the tune of Rs 600 crore and the automobile sector of Rs 180 crore.

Commenting on the losses incurred by transporters in the ongoing agitation, Mr Sahai said, ''Bank installments of about Rs 38 crore are overdue besides interest payable to the tune of Rs 25 crore.'' Similarly, he said the region has incurred Rs one crore loss in Passenger Tax, Rs eight crore in insurance, Rs two crore in token tax.

Mr Sahai, who also met with the centre's delegation headed by Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil yesterday, said the visiting leader had assured of helping the region overcome the loss due to the agitation. ''It may take Jammu more than a year to zero its losses incurred during this agitation,'' he asserted.

Expressing solidarity with the Shri Amarnath Yatra Sangarsh Samiti (SAYSS), a conglomerate of several political and non-political outfits, the CCI president outrightly rejected the news of ''economic blockade'' to Kashmir as ''false propaganda of separatist elements'' against Jammu.

UNI VBH-VJ MIR KN1903

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