J&K’s new debt trap: JKIDFC borrows Rs 5,883 cr for 2274 non-productive dev projects

ZT News Network

JAMMU: Various public agencies of Jammu & Kashmir have borrowed Rs 5,883 crore for 2,274 languishing development projects from various banking institutions through Jammu & Kashmir Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation (JKIDFC) Limited since 2018.

Pertinently, in 2018, the then Governor administration of J&K established a company named Jammu &Kashmir Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation (JKIDFC) Limited to provide finance to long pending infrastructural projects facing funding shortage or deficiencies.

This Corporation was authorised to raise loans from financial institutions including state/nationalised banks and was authorised to raise a loan of Rs 8000 crore. It was also mandated to finance any new infrastructure projects, which are a priority as far as their public utility is concerned.

Economic experts are worried that most of the finance raised goes to non-productive development projects with little or no repayment capacity. In principle, such development projects are supposed to be funded through government’s own revenue sources.

JKIDFC is being manned by the Board of Directors chosen from the senior officers of the administration headed by Financial Commissioner, Finance, also Chairman & Managing Director of this Corporation.

Some 2274 languishing projects worth Rs 5883 crore have been financed under JKIDFC by J&K government so far.

These include 817 projects worth Rs 1719.50 crore of PHE Department,593 projects of Public Works Department worth (Rs 1311.37crore), 169 of PDD (Rs 302.91 crore), 102 of Health (Rs290.75 crore), 76 of I&FC (Rs 188.77 crore), 67 of H&UDD(Rs 355.06 crore), 113 of School Education(Rs83.63 crore), 92 of Industries(Rs 717.29 crore), 100 of Youth Services (Rs420.57 crore), 11 of Tourism (Rs 105.05 crore), 31 of Higher Education (Rs151.57 crore), 8 of Agriculture (Rs23.57 crore), 44 of Animal Husbandry (Rs7.01 crore), 7 of Horticulture(Rs 30.35 crore), 20 of Technical Education (Rs15.80crore), 5 of Estates (Rs 97.97 crore) and few vital projects of many other departments.It is targeted that 1256 projects worth Rs2219.16crorewill be completed by the end of this financial year. Among them, 422 projects (Rs 626.34 crore) are to be completed by PHE department, 180 (Rs201.31crore) by R&B department, 167 (Rs 299.80 crore) by PDD, 76 (Rs 188.77 crore) by I&FC department, 98(Rs 67.83crore) by School Education, 88 (Rs142.67 crore) by Youth Services& Sports, 50 (Rs 70.72 crore) by H&ME, 48 each by Housing (Rs153.01 crore) and Industries Departments (Rs 314.97 crore) shall be dedicated to public by March 2020.

Expenditure of around Rs 479.04 crores has already been made by the Departments executing such projects. First time projects worth cost of more than Rs 400 crores are under execution under JKIDFC for upgrading the sports infrastructure across J&K. It includes development of a number of new sports stadiums in the rural areas of J&K. The department of Youth Services is augmenting sports infrastructure across length and breadth of J&K incurring the cost of Rs 202.28 crores. Besides these, it is also completing some important sports infrastructure projects like recently inaugurated Maulana Azad Stadium, Jammu, Bakshi Stadium Srinagar, TRC ground Srinagar and Gani Kashmiri Memorial Sports Stadium Srinagar at a cost of Rs 70.12 crores.

Some of the mega languishing infrastructure development projects approved by JKIDFC are Comprehensive Sewerage Scheme, Jammu (Rs108.16 crore), Comprehensive Sewerage Scheme, Srinagar (Rs 154.69 crore), EDI Campus Bari-Brahmana, Jammu (Rs 50.74 crore), Jambu Zoo (Rs 49.17 crores), Women Entrepreneurship Development Centre, Jammu (Rs32.24 crore), Industrial Estate at Kathua (Rs 81.15 crore), BPOs across J&K (Rs 60 crore), and Drilling of Hand pumps across Kashmir region (Rs 33.50 crore).

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