Congress to study note ban impact in Uttarakhand’s industrial belts
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Congress to study note ban impact in Uttarakhand’s industrial belts

dehradun Updated: Jan 15, 2018 21:19 IST
Neha Pant
Neha Pant
Hindustan Times
Uttarakhand News,industrial belts,demonetisation

At Congress state headquarters in Doon. The announcement of the study comes ahead of the civic polls due in Uttarakhand in April. (HT Photo)

An embattled Uttarakhand Congress, which has got fresh ammo with the recent suicide of a debt-ridden transporter, will undertake a fact-finding exercise to ascertain the employment losses in factories located in the key industrial belts of the state after demonetisation.

The survey comes ahead of the civic polls due in Uttarakhand in April.

Transporter Prakash Pandey, who attended a janata darshan (public grievance redressal) programme at the BJP’s state office after consuming poison, had blamed demonetisation and subsequent introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) for his financial losses.

Congress leader Indira Hridayesh said her party would soon reach out to industrialists and labour unions to “find out about the quantum of losses including to employment and revenue generation” after demonetisation.

The survey’s focus will be on key industrial belts in Uttarakhand located in Haridwar, Udham Singh Nagar and Dehradun districts, said the former finance minister in the erstwhile Congress government.

“As a part of the exercise, our (Congress) leaders will find out about the impact of demonetisation and GST launch in different industries their respective areas. After the survey, we will submit a report of our findings to the government to demand a special package for the affected persons,” said Hridayesh, the leader of the opposition in the state assembly.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi in November 2016 announced the NDA government’s decision to withdraw the high-denomination notes of ₹500 and ₹1,000 in a bid to crack down on the black money and circulation of fake currency.

After the currency note recall, a study by the All India Manufacturers’ Organisation (AIMO) released last year, stated that the micro-small scale industries suffered around 35% job losses and 50% dip in revenue.

The AIMO is a body that represents over 3 lakh micro, small, medium and large scale industries of the country.

The Congress is also planning to undertake a public campaign in the form of rallies, candle marches and foot marches from January 29 to highlight the “suffering of the small businesses and businessmen” due to demonetisation and GST among other issues.

The ruling BJP, meanwhile, dubbed the Congress’s proposed survey as a “mark of their frustration”.

“They (Congress leaders) are baffled due to our (BJP) governments’ growing popularity. They are not able to find any concrete issues and hence resorting to such steps to oppose progressive decisions to fight corruption,” said Devendra Bhasin, BJP state unit media in-charge.

First Published: Jan 15, 2018 21:19 IST