21 June, 2021

Zoning In The Moolah

The former state’s new industrial policy aims to push investment towards unlikely destinations

Terraced rice fields ready for harvesting near the LoC at Teetwal in North Kashmir
Photograph by Umer Asif
Zoning In The Moolah

The Jammu and Kashmir government has opened areas close to the Line of Control and the international border with Pakistan for investment to set up industries. Its new industrial policy has divided areas in all 20 districts of J&K into zone-A and zone-B “on the basis of industrial development so as to promote equitable spatial industrial growth”. Zone-B is what the government plans to incentivise more, with investors getting land at prices much lower than in zone-A. Any investor in zone-B will get 50 per cent subsidy as compared to 40 per cent in zone-A. Officials say this is for the first time in 70 years that industrial policy has been devised in such a manner.

Some of the places chosen for the project would raise eyebrows as these are close to the LoC or the border—a ragged mountainous terrain and highly militarised zone that regularly records shelling and skirmishes. The incentive is, hence, more for these border areas. In Jammu district, for instance, areas like Bishnah, Marth, Satwari, Nagrota, R.S. Pura and Miran Sahab are in zone-A, while...

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