CII forms task force for flood-ravaged J&K

New Delhi: Industry body CII has formed a Special Task Force to assist relief work in flood-hit Jammu & Kashmir in coordination with the state administration.
“We have set up relief camps cum control rooms in Jammu and Srinagar. These camps would play a key role in better and faster distribution of relief material to the needy and also help in enhanced coordination and liaisoning with Army and local authorities. We have also tied up with Western Command of the Indian Army to airlift material from Chandigarh to Srinagar,” head of the Task Force Zubin Irani told PTI.
“We have also dispatched relief material including water bottles, batteries, water purifiers, baby food, biscuits, blankets, tents, etc. to Jammu & Kashmir,” he added.
Till now, CII said it has helped in providing relief to almost four thousand families and aims to provide immediate relief to five thousand more families in the next few days.
“After coordinating with various Government Agencies, Army, NDRF and local authorities in J&K, an interim assessment of the situation has been done and we have shared the urgent essential requirements with CII membership, requesting them to contribute generously,” Irani said.
CII also plans to set up 4-5 health camps and medical check-up camps to counter any epidemic threat.
As there are issues of connectivity and reaching out to Srinagar, CII has tied up with the Western Command, Indian Army, headquartered at Chandimandir which in turn air lifted the relief material including commodities of utmost requirement to Srinagar from 3 BRD Air force Station in Chandigarh.
The relief material dispatched till now includes 30,000 water bottles, 4,400 Torches with Batteries, 20 Water Purifiers, 200 packets of baby food, 150 kg milk powder packs, 4800 Maggi noodles packs, 2400 juice bottles, 2100 Glucon-D 100gm packs, 15,000 Glucose Biscuits, 30 Family Tents, 14 cartons of Medicines, 800 blankets, etc.
Meanwhile, PHD Chamber of Commerce estimates that Jammu & Kashmir will lose earnings of about Rs 3,000 crore from the tourism sector in the current financial year on account of torrential rains that devastated the state recently.
The size of the tourism earnings was estimated at around Rs 14,000 crore for 2014-15 of which around 20 per cent has been washed away, points out the Chamber’s assessment. It further estimates that the damage may hit 2 lakh jobs.
“Since tourism sector is badly impacted, it will have its contagion effect on other associated segments of tourism sector like hotels, restaurants, shopping centres, pilgrimage associations, gardens, house boats, pony riders etc,” said PHD Chamber Executive Director Saurabh Sanyal.
“To offset the loss in employment generation, skill development amongst the local youth would be critical to engage them in other promising sectors of the economy such as food processing, horticulture, handlooms & handicrafts, floriculture & sericulture,” he added.

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