Srinagar, Jan 29: Stating that fresh 64-hour lockdown has affected the economic activity badly, the Kashmir Economic Forum (KEF) Saturday urged the administration to reconsider the decision and help revive Valley’s fledgling economy.
In a statement, President KEF Showkat M Chowdhary said the valley’s business units have been badly suffering from the previous lockdowns and had hardly started to recover the loses.
“It is not advisable to enforce lockdown in the Valley. The lockdown decision has also sent alarm to the travellers as a result of which around 50 percent of the tourist influx has come down since weekend lockdown was announced. This has impacted livelihood of many people,” said Chowdhary.
Chowdhary said instead of lockdown, the government should ensure that proper health guidelines are followed.
“We will also provide all possible support to the government in ensuring implementation of Covid Appropriate Behaviours. Traders, shopkeepers and restaurant owners will also entertain vaccinated customers who are following proper SOPs,” he said.
KEF further said most of the population is already fully vaccinated, and government needs to devise strategies for the “new normal” of life with COVID as suggested by many health experts and practiced by many developed countries like USA and UK instead of brining miseries to the people who are earning from hand to mouth.
“Even the health experts and other senior doctors have said that lockdown will not serve purpose. The lockdown has been imposed the past also but the Covid has resurfaced again,” he said.
The KEF has urged LG administration to take into consideration the livelihood of lakhs of people associated with business community before continuing with the lockdown.
“The traders, shopkeepers, restaurants should be allowed with proper SOPs for the good health of economy. This will ensure businessmen don’t suffer more losses or else they will turn into Non Performing Assets,” he said.