March 2018 News

Despite Government's Efforts, 18 PSUs In Jammu And Kashmir Remain In 'red'

23 March 2018

Srinagar: The Mehbooba Mufti government tried to bring 18 public sector undertakings (PSUs) in Jammu and Kashmir back on track but these firms continue to bleed, according to a report in The Economic Times. Data released by the government showed that 18 firms suffered losses to the tune of Rs 191 crore in the past two years. J&K Cements Ltd tops the list with a loss of Rs 46.74 crore-Rs 31.73 crore in 2016-17 and Rs 15.01 crore in 2017-18. JK State Road Transport Corporation and JK State Financial Corporation are other PSUs suffering huge losses with the latter posting losses of Rs 1.02 crore in 2016-17, way more than its losses of Rs 45.73 lakh in the year before. The state government had to intervene a few years ago to provide support to the PSUs when a major share was in financial trouble and could not even pay salaries. Having said that, a number of PSUs saw improvement in their performance and restricted their losses to the minimum. The JK Handloom Corporation, State Industrial Development Corporation, JK Handicrafts Corporation and the Horticultural Produce Marketing and Processing Corporation are few of the well-performing firms. Also, add to the list the SC, ST and Backward Class development corporations. An official from the finance department of the government said that financial engineering in PSUs has been successfully initiated as part of institutional reforms, in the last two years. He said, 'The process to clean up the balance sheets and improve bottom lines of the PSUs, prior to bringing them under a new holding company structure, is underway.' The handful of profit-making firms in the state are JK Police housing Corporation, JK Cabe Car Corporation, JK Small Scale Industries Development Corporation and JK Women's Development Corporation. JK Minerals and JK Projects Construction Corporation are two PSUs who joined the profit-making PSUs, rising from their losses in the previous financial year. The ruling PDP-BJP alliance had appointed 16 top party officials as vice chairpersons of 16 PSUs and the move drew a lot of criticism from the Opposition and many experts. Haseeb Drabu, the then finance minister had pitched for restructuring of PSUs to make them more organised.