SAC approves J&K Start-up Policy, takes major decsions

GJ Report
Srinagar, Sep 12: In a significant decision to facilitate and nurture growth of new Start-ups, the State Administrative Council (SAC), which met here today under the chairmanship of Governor, Satya Pal Malik approved the “J&K Start-up Policy 2018”.
Advisors to the Governor, B B Vyas, K Vijay Kumar and Khurshid Ahmad Ganai, Chief Secretary, B V R Subrahmanyam and Principal Secretary to Governor, Umang Narula attended the meeting.
The Policy aims to inspire the young and entrepreneurial brains of Jammu and Kashmir to pursue innovation and entrepreneurship by creating a vibrant and conducive Start-up ecosystem in the State. The Government through this Policy aims to empower Start-ups to grow through innovation and design which, inter-alia, will help in accelerating economic growth besides generating employment opportunities.
The Policy shall give special attention to Start-ups with disruptive value additions in Food Processing and Allied activities, Agriculture including Horticulture and Floriculture, Textiles, Apparel & Fashion Technology, Renewable Energy, Handicrafts & Handlooms and their design element, Electronics System Design and Manufacturing, Information Technology enabled Services
The Policy will facilitate growth of new Start-ups through establishment of at least 10 new state-of-the-art incubators, Innovation Labs and Fabrication Labs across the three regions of the State including private sector. A strong institutional framework will be put in place for effective implementation, monitoring and evaluation of this policy.
A Monthly Allowance upto Rs 12,000 (for a period of one year) during incubation and one-time assistance upto Rs 12 lakh shall be given to a recognized Start-up for Product Research & Development or introduction of an innovative product or service in the market.
A Start-up shall be eligible for Energy Assistance, International Patent Filing Cost Reimbursement, Tax benefits/ relaxations in Public Procurement processes. Other interventions proposed in the Policy are creation of Innovation/Skill Development Fund, establishment of Jammu and Kashmir Angel Network (JKAN), Academic Interventions and Awareness and Outreach.
The Policy shall be valid for a period of ten years or till a new Start-up Policy is framed by the Government.
In another landmark decision, the State Administrative Council (SAC), approved the “J&K Single Window (Industrial Investment and Business Facilitation) Act, 2018″.
The Act is an initiative, under the flagship program of Ease of Doing Business (EoDB) of Government of J&K, aimed at comprehensive and unprecedented overhaul of the outdated processes and procedures involved in setting up and operation of businesses in the state.
The legislation aims at making the doing of business in the State much easier and to create a hassle-free business friendly environment here.
Earlier, Pre-establishment approvals/NOCs would take months/years to obtain. The approvals/NOCs can now be obtained in a matter of week(s) through on-line mode in a time bound manner. Under a single umbrella, services of more than 12 departments have been brought to the door steps of the people through on-line mode. All services from Pre-establishment, Pre-Operation to Renewals will be available at the Single Window Portal.
The legislation also provides for a three level Committee at the State, Division and District level, fast clearances within the stipulated timeframe; minimum physical touch points with the official hierarchy; provision of deemed clearances; better compliance and transparency and an inbuilt grievance redressal mechanism.
The enactment of this ‘Single Window Act’ would ensure an improved EoDB ranking of the State of J&K during 2018.
Meanwhile the State Administrative Council (SAC), accorded sanction to the release of additional installment of 2% Dearness Allowance (DA) to the State Government employees and pensioners w.e.f 1st July, 2018, over the existing rate of 7% of the basic pay / pension.
The arrears from July, 2018 to September 2018 will be credited to respective G.P Fund accounts of the employees and w.e.f October, 2018, the salary /pension will be drawn on revised rates of D.A. However, pensioners or those employees retiring this year will be paid arrears in cash.
The impact on the exchequer on account of Dearness Allowance would be Rs 118 crore for the current financial year and the annual financial implications would come to Rs 177 crore approximately.
The enhancement of DA would benefit around 4.50 lakh State Government employees and 1.60 lakh pensioners.
The SAC also accorded sanction to the enhancement/grant of ex-gratia relief to the NoKs of J&K Police Personnel killed in course of performing duties attributed to act of violence/militancy related incidents.
The decision will enhance the existing cumulative ex-gratia relief admissible to the NoKs of J&K Police Personnel from Rs 48 lakh to Rs 70 Lakh and to NoKs of SPOs from Rs 14.5 Lakh to Rs 30 Lakh.
The ex-gratia relief has been enhanced from Rs 2 lakh to Rs 5 Lakh under SRE(R&R) to NoKs of the J&K Police Personnel/SPOs and CAPFs/Army personnel; from Rs 3 Lakh to Rs 7 Lakh to NoKs of J&K Police Personnel from the Police Welfare Fund (MHA); from Rs 18 Lakh to Rs 33 Lakh to the NoKs of J&K Police Personnel, out of State Resources and grant of additional amount of Rs 12.50 lakh to the NoKs of Special Police Officers (SPOs), out of state resources.
The SAC further approved that education of two children in private schools in the State upto class 12th of such personnel of Jammu & Kashmir Police as may be martyred in militancy related incidents/violence, shall be borne by the State Education Department.
The State Administrative Council also approved the proposal of Horticulture Department for setting up of walnut processing units in the private sector through an enabled interest subvention scheme.
The objective is to increase the processing capacity of walnuts in the state. The adherence to scientific processing and grading practices shall fetch better returns in today’s competitive market.
The scheme will facilitate the interest subvention of 100% for a period of 5 years on a loan of Rs 1 crore availed for establishing of Walnut Processing Unit of 500 MTs capacity in Private sector. Ten (10) walnut processing units of 500 metric ton capacity each have been targeted under the scheme.
In another similar decision, the SAC approved setting up of the walnut nurseries in the private sector with an attractive interest subvention and subsidy support.
This scheme shall facilitate 50% subsidy, subject to a ceiling of Rs 7.50 lakh, for establishing a walnut nursery with high tech poly green house, costing Rs 15 lakh in private sector and 100% interest subvention on balance loan raised for the purpose, for a period of 05 years. Seven (7) walnut nurseries are targeted to be covered under the scheme during 2018-19.
The proposal aims to encourage private entrepreneurs for establishment of walnut nurseries for the production of grafted walnut plants which are having huge demand not only in the state but also in Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand & North Eastern States. The availability of grafted walnut plants of the recommended varieties shall boost the production of walnuts in the State. This will also help in production of uniform produce.
The SAC also approved the proposal of Horticulture Department for promoting Aloe Vera cultivation both in the Public as well as the Private sector.
The proposal aims to promote Aloe Vera cultivation for overall development of Horticulture sector in Jammu Division by providing 75% subsidy, subject to a ceiling of Rs 0.75 lakh per hectare, for plantation of Aloe Vera in 50-hectare area in the districts of Kathua, Samba, Jammu, Udhampur and Reasi under private sector.
Besides, an Aloe Vera nursery and three Aloe Vera processing units shall be established in the public sector for making planting material available and processing the produce of the growers for higher returns.
The State Administrative Council also approved the proposal of Horticulture Department for facilitating private players to establish more Controlled Atmosphere stores (CA) stores in the State by providing additional back ended subsidy support.
Private entrepreneurs shall be encouraged to establish more CA stores in the J&K State, thus increasing the withholding capacity of orchardists for ‘A” grade Apple as result of which supply of Apples can be regulated for better returns to the orchardists by providing 33% back ended subsidy (Max. upto Rs. 7.26 Crore on pro rata basis) on establishment of 5000 MT capacity CA storage facility in addition to the back-ended subsidy already available under the centrally sponsored scheme Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture.
The additional subsidy support shall be provided to 10 CA stores of at least 5000 MTs capacity each which shall be coming up in the state during two years, i.e. 2018-19 and 2020-21.
In another major decision, SAC approved the proposal for providing interest subvention for procurements of Refrigerated vans. The proposal aims to encourage private entrepreneurs to purchase refrigerated vans in the State by providing 100% interest subvention for their procurement.
The introduction of refrigerated transport system shall prove a boon for marketing of fruits, particularly the perishable ones, besides maintaining cold chain by providing. Two types of refrigerated trucks are generally used for carrying fruits to terminal markets having capacity of 9 MTs and 16 MTs costing approximately Rs 32 lakh and Rs 46 lakh, respectively.
The maximum subsidy permissible under MIDH is Rs 13 lakh per vehicle of 9 MTs capacity and above. The entrepreneur raises 70% of the loan usually at the rate of 12% per annum. 100% interest subvention on the loan raised for procurement of such vehicles less by subsidy provided under MIDH has been approved.
The 100% interest subvention shall be provided for purchase of 10 Refrigerated vans including 5 Vans of 9-ton capacity and 5 Vans of 16-ton capacity, for a period of five years on the reducing balance of loan.
The State Administrative Council (SAC), also approved transfer of State land measuring 77 Kanal& 17 Marla situated at villages of Regipora, Bohipora and Kupwara of District Kupwara to the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences & Technology Kashmir (SKUAST-K) for establishing Krishi Vigyan Kendra.
The SAC further directed the Agriculture Production Department to take up the matter with SKUAST-Kashmir/Jammu for establishment of Krishi Vigyan Kendras in other districts of the State, as are without such facilities.
The State Administrative Council also accorded sanction to the creation of 400 posts of Veterinary Assistant Surgeons for appointment through JKPSC and 400 posts of Paravets for appointment through JKSSB in a phased manner in the Animal / Sheep Husbandry Department.
The SAC further asked the Animal & Sheep Husbandry Department to examine as to whether the recruitment against these newly created posts can be conducted on the basis of written tests only.
The creation of these posts will fulfill the long pending demand for regularization of Animal & Sheep Husbandry trial centres besides infusing fresh professional talent in the Department for maintaining health & welfare of animals, thereby, enhancing mutton, milk & poultry production in the State.