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Archive for August, 2007

My views which appear here have actually been taken from the comments section of my earlier post as I felt it would do justice to have this topic (Influx of non-Kashmiri labourers / artisans into Kashmir and recent threat by some organisations) discussed separately.

I will start with my recent remarks which also appear in the previous post. Request all fellow bloggers to drop in their comments on the topic in this post only.

Thanks

Sajad
Thanks for regularly participating in this discussion, although the subject of this post and your views may not be in complete harmony.

Having said that, I’d like to mention that we should not be comparing the large scale immigration (or whatever word you may like to refer it by) of unskilled labour to the valley with the employment of Kashmiris (generally high-skilled) outside Kashmir. There are many reasons for holding this belief but I would like to quote a few:

1. Kashmiris employed in any of the corporates be it IT, BPOs or even banks outside of valley contribute to the national GDP by way of taxes. So, if I am gainfully employed in Mumbai not only do I pay my annual taxes as required, I also pay other taxes like Professional tax every month. This tax goes towards development of the city that I earn my bread and butter from. Can anyone of us draw a parallel here – Does the unskilled labour contribute to economy of Kashmir besides buying bread and butter there?

2. The large scale influx of non-locals to Kashmiris besides giving rise to some unwelcome social issues can also deal a body blow (if it hasn’t already) to the locals who are involved in similar profession – masons, carpenters, barbers. Agreed the services come at a discount, but can we sustain the long term impact – I am not very sure. I would say this is some kind of a dumping being forced on us, thereby ensuring the locals themselves are forced out of the profession.

3. What happens if suddenly this long line of supply (non-local labour) starts dwindling, how are we supposed to cope up with the demand then? We have always been dependent on outside Kashmir for many of the things, this will simply add to our woes.

4. How many of the non-state subjects would be paying their electricity bills, water taxes, road tax. I doubt if they do – and even if they do pay electricity bills (assuming the landlord doesn’t resort to widespread illegal tapping of electricity so much prevalent) it would be a pittance compared to what those outside the state have to shell out.

5. Most of the Kashmiris who earn their livelihood outside spent a good percentage of their income outside the valley – be it mobile bills, travel, recreation, entertainment since they invariably stay at the same place. Thus, again there is an inflow of capital into the same economy where I earn it from. What does non-skilled labour from rest of India does in Kashmir, Earn and then save enough money and pump it back into their local markets- a massive outflow of capital from Kashmiri economy.

I may not be a supporter of Quit-Kashmir, but I do not believe in the fact that we can compare the scenario.

May my Kashmir always remain for Kashmiris.
Juz A Kashmiri

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