Centre appoints Finance Secretary as liaison officer with J-K

Centre appoints Finance Secretary as liaison officer with J-KNEW DELHI: The Centre has appointed Finance Secretary Ratan Wattal as the liaison officer with Jammu and Kashmir government to ensure that the flow of funds to the state is fast-tracked for smooth implementation of Prime Minister’s Development Package.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in his meeting with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti yesterday assured her of complete cooperation on all the issues related to his ministry.

“Jaitley assured the Chief Minister of early action in the matter, adding the Secretary, Department of Expenditure, Ratan Wattal, has been appointed as the coordinator for smooth implementation of Prime Minister’s Development Package. He will maintain close liaison with the state Finance Minister, Dr. Haseeb Drabu, so that the flow of funds to the state is fast-tracked,” a statement from the state government said.

Mehbooba had met Jaitley and sought creation of a separate window for Prime Minister’s Development Package to speed up flow of resources to the state.

“She also requested early release this month of Rs 880 crore for interest subvention, Rs 2,000 crore for damaged infrastructure approved by NITI Aayog and another Rs 2,000 crore for displaced persons in Jammu so that disbursement of compensation can commence,” it said.

She discussed with Jaitley the need for creating a separate window for Prime Minister’s Development Package to speed up flow of resources to the state. .
The Chief Minister highlighted the need for replacing the present barter system with banking system at the cross-LoC Trade at Salamabad (in Baramulla) and Chaka da Bagh (in Poonch) keeping in view the RBI nod for dollar-denominated trade for cross-LoC transactions

The statement said she also sought Jaitley’s intervention in inclusion of additional items in the approved list for which the matter has to be vigorously pursued in the next meeting of the Joint Working Group between India and Pakistan.

The Chief Minister demanded a new Central Industrial Policy for the state as the present policy will expire on June 17 this year.

“She called for extension of exemptions on income tax and concession of insurance premiums to Jammu and Kashmir entrepreneurs, on the analogy of industrial package available to the North-Eastern States,” it said.–PTI

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