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Cashing in on cash
Posted:Dec 13, 2017
 
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A senior bank official revealed on Tuesday that the cash supply by RBI to banks in the state has been reduced by almost 70 percent which is causing great inconvenience to the customers. The bank official further said that the high denomination banknotes like Rs 2000 have been reduced in the RBI cash supply and the bank authorities are left with no option but to load the teller machines with lower denomination notes. The Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry has expressed anguish while the state Finance Minister Haseeb Drabu refuting the claims said that there was no paucity of high denomination notes in the state. The description by the bank official that instead of loading Rs 40 lakh in an ATM they are only able to load Rs 7 lakh has certainly raised eyebrows. The reaction from business community, trade bodies and commerce chamber is on expected lines. However, the veracity in the claims also needs to be verified before reaching any conclusion. In J&K state where economy has been reduced to shreds by protracted conflict, violent eruptions and failure of successive governments to boost the economy – such a matter attracts attention from left, right and centre. The union government as a matter of fact did come forward on many occasions to usher in new hope and confidence by throwing special economic packages and schemes. But the economic graph of the state could not take off due to wrong implementation of policies and plans. Instead, the liabilities that are simply being passed on from one government to another have been accruing making it even more difficult for the state economy to recuperate. The incumbent PDP-BJP coalition government started its six-year journey with one such initiative – the Rs 80,000 crore special economic package announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November 2015. In April 2017, in a high-level inter-ministerial meeting chaired by Home Minister Rajnath Singh, it was revealed that the union government had released 25 percent (Rs 19,000 crore) till then for various development works in the state. In the last couple of years, the focus of the government apparently is on infrastructure development. But the government must not forget its other priorities, like reducing liabilities and encouraging business and trade activities in the state in general and in Kashmir in particular. Now that an issue has been flagged, it is the job of the government to look into the matter and remove discrepancies if they really exist. Kashmir needs the right kind of an environment to help the state economy get back on its feet.      

Rising Kashmir, December 14, 2017
 
 
 
 
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