New Delhi, Aug 28 (PTI) Union Minister Jitendra Singh on Friday said 25,000 people will get direct employment opportunities in Jammu and Kashmir as three bamboo clusters will be developed in Jammu, Katra and Samba for making bamboo baskets, incense sticks and charcoal.
Singh, the Union minister for PMO and Development of Northeastern Region (DoNER), also said that a mega bamboo industrial park near Jammu and a bamboo technology training centre in the region will come up within two years of the allotment of land by the Jammu administration.
'Three bamboo clusters will be developed in Jammu, Katra and Samba for making bamboo basketry, 'agarbatti' (incense sticks) and bamboo charcoal which will provide direct employment opportunities to about 25,000 people,' he said at a review meeting of the Ministry of DoNER.
Taking stock of the steps to be taken for augmenting infrastructure and promoting entrepreneurship in the bamboo sector in Jammu and Kashmir, Singh said this will be pursued as a major priority in coming days.
The minister said there are huge reserves of bamboo spread across Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh, which have remained unexplored and largely unutilised.
He said as part of the initiatives taken at the behest of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to replicate good practices of all ministries in the newly created Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, the North Eastern Council, Ministry of DoNER through Cane and Bamboo Technology Centre (CBTC) are also going to replicate their expertise in the bamboo sector in Jammu and Kashmir in the form of a workshop-cum-exhibition and other initiatives.
The minister said a workshop held in January this year has thrown light at the significant presence of bamboo green in Jammu, Samba and Kathua and a few bamboo-based micro level enterprises and entrepreneurs.
He said in the light of this, the CBTC will take up technical collaboration and partnership with the Jammu and Kashmir administration for setting up common facility centres, cane and bamboo technology parks, cane and bamboo industrial parks, FPO, clusters and hi-tech nurseries on BOT (Built-Operate-Transfer), turnkey basis with their funding support as the case may be in due course.
The Union minister said a team from the ministry will soon visit Jammu and explore a field training programme for bamboo farming in the region.
Singh said the experience of the northeastern states will help the artisans of Jammu and Kashmir to better their economic conditions and also assist in commercial exploitation of bamboo grown in this region.
He said of late, bamboo is being used in low cost housing and as construction material.
He said in the coming years, bamboo awareness camps will be organised in different parts of the country. PTI ACB SNE SNE