Udhampur (Jammu and Kashmir) [India], October 14 (ANI): The coronavirus crisis has caused a debilitating effect not only on human life but also on several businesses. The silk industry is bearing the brunt of the pandemic due to the unavailability of raw material in the Udhampur district.
The silk industry has opened after nine months in Udhampur. However, industry employees, as well as owners, are suffering due to the unavailability of the raw material, cocoon. An auction market for cocoon is organised annually but due to COVID-19, this year the auction was limited to Jammu and Kashmir Industries (JKI).
The private industry was worse hit due to the lockdown restrictions because they couldn't procure any raw material in time. "After nine months, we've resumed production with stored raw material. We need new raw material to continue production," Mahaveer Dhar, a silk producer told ANI.
"There are 20-25 labours working with us, they will be out of work soon if the Jammu and Kashmir administration doesn't provide us with new raw material," Mahaveer Dhar added.
"During the lockdown, I went back home and sat idle for nine months. Finally, when I came to the factory, the raw material available was of very poor quality and limited in quantity as well. I hope the Jammu and Kashmir administration takes our problem into consideration," Abu Bakar Momin, a worker from West Bengal, said.
Sericulture District officer Rajiv Gupta assured that they will establish a cocoon auction market soon so that private silk industries can buy the raw material. "We will roll the 'Cocoon Bank Scheme' for our silk manufacturers very soon. Under this scheme, the buyers have to pay only 10 per cent of the amount while the government bears the rest price money. It will help the private industries," he told ANI. (ANI)