India Kashmir – Srinagar, April 27: As government of Indian Kashmir has been unable to provide arrears amounting to Rs 4200 crores to its 500,000 work force, senior separatist leader and cleric, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq Tuesday disclosed that international funding agencies were ready to provide direct funding for developmental projects in the region.
Addressing the media in Srinagar, Mirwaiz, who is chairman of moderate faction of Hurriyat Conference (conglomerate of separatist groups), said international funding agencies including International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank (WB) and European Union (EU) are willing to directly invest in the troubled region.
“However, Government of India has been denying direct access to them as it wants to keep Kashmir backward and down-trodden region,” he said.
The government of Indian Kashmir is facing shortage of funds and has been unable to pay arrears to its 0.5 million work force. “If the government pays arrears amounting to Rs 4200 crores to its employees, the developmental projects in the region would have to be halted and there will be rise in prices of essential commodities,” chief minister of the region, Omar Abdullah had said recently.
The condition of roads is in bad shape in some parts of Kashmir especially in far off areas as government does not have money to incur expenditure on the developmental projects.
It is pertinent to mention here that World Bank has insisted upon a disclaimer from Indian Kashmir government that funding for any project will not be seen as recognition of India’s territorial claim on the region.
The agency had put a ‘disclaimer clause’ for bankrolling a key project in the border state which indicates that funding of projects in disputed areas should not be used to endorse territorial claims.
NationalTurk Kashmir – Fayaz Wani