Bail out fruit industry from the prevailing crisis, re-introduce MIS : Hakeem tells LG Sinha

“Waive off KCC loans, provide subsidy on fruit packaging materials”

Srinagar: Chairman People’s Democratic Front (PDF) and former Minister Hakeem Mohammad Yaseen on Saturday said fruit growers and traders of Jammu and Kashmir are facing tremendous challenges and difficulties to sell their produce due to prevailing Coronavirus pandemic and such they deserved to be bailed out by the Government in this hour of difficulty.
In a statement issued on Saturday Hakeem urged the new Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha to issue orders, in his first opportunity, for re- introduction of the Market Intervention Scheme (MIS ) to help the fruit growers to market their fresh fruits especially apple and pear. He said since harvesting of the fresh crop of pears and apple has begun, government should put in place all the required measures to ensure that fruit growers do not face any difficulty for marketing of their produce.
Hakeem said that the fruit growers of jammu and kashmir are confronted with multiple challenges in marketing of their fruit produce due to prevailing Coronaviru pandemic adding that it was paramount duty of the government to come to thier rescue and make all necessary arrangements to ensure marketing of their produce so they are not put to economic loss, looming large upon them . He has urged the new Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha to re-introduce MIS, in his first opportunity, to save fruit growers from the losses. He said fruit industry was the mainstay of state’s economy , which provides livelihood to about 25 lakh souls associated with fruit production and it’s trade, directly and indirectly, adding that government should come up with a comprehensive policy to bail out the fruit trade from the prevailing crisis. Jammu and kashmir produces abou 2 million metric tonnes annually with a market of over Rs 10000 crore. He said re- introduction of MIS would help to provide a great deal of hassle free marketing facilities to the fruit growers and provide them good relief.
Hakeem urged the administration to put in place pro-active measures to bail out the fruit industry from the extraordinary challenges confronted to it in the wake of prevailing Coronavirus pandemic. He said adequate measures should be taken to procure both A- grade as well as C- grade apple and pears from fruit growers from the fruit mandies in their respective areas because it will be a herrucalian job to arrange adequate number of trucks / transport at individual level for exporting fruit to various fruit mandies in other states of the country in the prevailing situation due to pandemic.
“Besides, re- Introducing MIS for the benefit of fruit growers, government should also waive of KCC loans of the farmers and provide them subsidy on purchase of fungicides, fertilizers and fruit packaging materials,” Hakeem demanded . He said it was now from last two fruit seasons, begining from 5th August last year, that fruit growers are suffering great losses for want of adequate marketing of their fruit produce adding that in a Welfare state, onus lies on the government to come to thier rescue and relief. He said jammu and kashmir can not afford to neglect it’s fruit industry which has always helped the people to survive in the most testing times in past . He said it was a golden opportunity for the new incumbent LG of jammu and kashmir to rise to the occasion to bail out about 25 lakh souls associated with the fruit business, from the prevailing crisis confronting them.

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