A Gujarati will set up first pharma unit in J&K, says Union minister

Mansukh Mandaviya at the Gujarat Chamber of Commerce & Industry in Ahmedabad, Saturday. (Express)

Mansukh Mandaviya, the Union Minister of state for shipping, chemicals and fertilizers, said that a Gujarati will set up the first pharmaceutical unit in Kashmir. He was speaking to businessmen at the Gujarat Chamber of Commerce & Industry (GCCI) on Saturday.

I am confident… I also look after the pharmaceutical department, as well as chemicals and petrochemicals… the first pharmaceutical unit (in Kashmir) will be set up by a Gujarati, said Mandaviya while speaking on Business opportunities in Jammu and Kashmir.

Pointing out how Gujarati firms were the first to take advantage of the relaxations offered by Himachal Pradesh to pharmaceutical industries a decade ago, the minister said, Today half of the industries (in HP) are ours.

The situations will not change overnight. Not a single bullet has been fired in the last one month. Slowly efforts are being made to include it (Kashmir) in the national mainstream and make it part of the country. The local residents will also feel that they are part of India. Administrative work is being done to ensure that separatists do not get a chance, he added.

Mandaviya also said that job and business opportunities will slowly open up in Kashmir. J&K will tread on the path of progress, he said, adding that Article 370 had given rise to separatist tendencies among the youths in Jammu and Kashmir and encouraged terrorism , which Pakistan had taken advantage of.

GCCI also expressed interest in opening a chapter office in J&K. Durgesh Buch, the president of GCCI, a body of MSMEs in the state, said, If the government permits, we would like to open a chapter office in J&K which will represent the traders and businessmen of Gujarat. This is a suggestion and not a demand. Buch added that he has not discussed this issue with other members of GCCI.

Mandaviya also said the Indian economy will grow at 10-15 per cent in the next 10 years. I understand GST well and I also understand the country s economy… In the next 10 years, the graph will remain bullish. The GDP will grow by 10-15 per cent and in the next 10 years adequate infrastructure development will happen.