CM has taken up issue of rising airfares during peak season with concerned agencies: Fin Min

CM has taken up issue of rising airfares during peak season with concerned agencies: Fin Min
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KCCI delegation presented memorandum

SRINAGAR: Minister for Finance Altaf Bukhari Friday said that the government shares the concern of the people regarding the high airfares during the peak tourism season in Kashmir.
Bukharisaid this while interacting with the delegation of Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) who called on the minister to discuss issues of Kashmir industry.
KCCI presented memorandum to Minister which includes representation of KCC&I in the JK trade promotion organisation, goods and service tax (GST) on handicrafts, prohibitive airfares, industrial package on the pattern of north east, implementation of announcements made in the state budget and comprehensive plan approved to the extent of Rs. 5crore for manufacturing and marketing activities of handicrafts
The delegation led by President Javid Ahmad Tenga raised the issue of high air fares being charged by airlines during peak tourism season that proves a major impediment for tourist inflow in the Kashmir valley. They said Kashmir having no railway link, the air travel becomes the only preferred mode of transport and that high airfares proves detrimental to the tourism sector.
Bukhari said the government shares the concern with the chamber and that Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has already raised the issue with the concerned agencies.
The delegation urged the minister to raise the issue of handicraft sector in upcoming GST council meeting to bring the GST on Handicrafts to zero level to give boost to this industry. They said the imposition of GST has dealt a hard blow to Handicraft industry as the sales and manufacturing has gone down and it warrants reversal and withdrawing of GST on handicrafts to help the trade in improving sales. They also urged government to help organizing exhibitions, buyer seller meets and financing liberally the artisans, manufacturers, exporters-cum-traders.
The delegation also appealed for an industrial package to the state of J&K on the pattern of north-eastern states. They appealed the minister to strongly push for a scheme on the pattern of the recently approved North –East Industrial Development Scheme (NEIDS) 2017.
The members also demanded inclusion of guest houses and restaurants in the decision of special power tariff to hotels made during the last budget session as according to them the guest houses and restaurants are part of the hotel industry.
Bukharigave patient hearing to the visiting delegation and assured to examine all the highlighted issues on priority and their appropriate disposal. He said the government is keen to promote industrial sector in the state which is key to the economy of the state.