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“I have lost everything. I owe millions. I am ready to sell a kidney”: the economic blow of the confinement


#Khan lives almost a hundred kilometers south of #Srinagar, not long ago he dreamed of a prosperous business. “First came the political and military blockade. Then another lockdown due to COVID-19. #All these months the business was closed ”, laments the young businessman.

#In the 17 months since the first lockdown, businesses in the region lost about $ 7 billion, while some 500,000 people were left without jobs.

#Qazigund (#India), #December 30 (EFE) .- #In #August of 2019 he #Indian government withdrew the semi-autonomy from #Cashmere india and, to avoid protests, imposed for months a strict confinement, which would be followed by restrictions by pandemic: a blow to the economy that has led some to even put their kidney for sale.

“I have lost everything and I have to pay more than 9 million rupees (about $ 120,000) in debt. #If someone needs to undergo a kidney transplantI’m ready to sell one of mine, ”read an ad published this month in the local newspaper. #Kashmir #Reader.

#Behind that ad is the businessman #Sabzar #Khan, 26, who at the beginning of last year had decided expand your business of building #In the town of #Qazigund, the gateway to #Kashmir #Valley, encouraged by good results.

#But, after obtaining the necessary funds from a bank and local moneylenders, on #August 5, 2019, the #Indian government eliminated the semi-autonomy of this #Muslim-majority region in dispute with #Pakistan and with a strong independence movement.

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#Fearing a forceful response from insurgent groups or general protests from the population, #New #Delhi then imposed an iron blockade for months, limiting movements, with strict curfews and cutting off communications.

#On #March 4, and after almost seven months, #Indian #Kashmir finally regained full access to the #Internet, but only 15 days later the authorities blocked the region again after detecting the first cases of coronavirus, a situation that would expand the following week to the whole country.

A RUINED FAMILY

#Khan lives in a mud house almost a hundred kilometers south of #Srinagar, the main #Kashmiri city, where until recently he dreamed of a prosperous business.

men-sitting-forest

#Qazigund (#India). #Photo: EFE, #Farooq #Khan.

“First came the political and military blockade. Then another lockdown due to COVID-19. #All these months the business was closed ”, laments the young businessman.

#His 65-year-old mother and his 20-year-old wife also decided to put their kidneys up for sale so that they could raise “all possible funds” and thus help him pay back the loans after having already sold all the machinery and supplies. was left of the business.

#Indian law does not allow financial transactions in kidney transplants, and both donor and recipient could be jailed for illegal organ trade.

“#If it is illegal, then let the government come to my rescue,” says #Khan.

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The situation is so desperate that now his disabled father “goes from house to house to collect groceries and money to feed the family,” explains his neighbor #Bashir #Ganai.

street vendor-india

A street vendor on a street in #Srinagar, the summer capital of #Indian #Kashmir. #Photo: EFE, #Farooq #Khan.

#But this is not a unique case.

#Trade associations in #Indian #Kashmir estimate that in the 17 months since the first lockdown, businesses in the region lost some $ 7 billion, while some 500,000 people were left unemployed.

“#It will be years before the #Kashmir economy returns to normal,” predicts #Aijaz #Shahdar, a member of the #Kashmir #Trade #Alliance (KTA) business lobby group.

A GENERAL PROBLEM

#Tech entrepreneur #Mufti #Salman is also having a hard time since he quit his lucrative job in the southern city of #Bangalore, considered #India’s #Silicon #Valley, and decided to return to his native #Kashmir.

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#Salman invested his savings in establishing a business process management company in #Srinagar.

“#Everything was ready. #It was a project with the potential to initially generate 400 jobs and with an investment of about 600 thousand rupees (about 8 thousand dollars), ”he explains.

#But two months later there was the first blockade of #August and “everything stopped in its tracks”, just when they had begun to hire the first employees.

#After trying to revive the business, #Salman has given up.

#Others, like #Shamshad #Ali, who runs a shipping company, are on the edge.

“I was and still am on the verge of closure. I cannot be discouraged. I’ll keep going, “says, 27, who despite not making a profit, sees how in the last two months the situation has begun to improve, although” it is far from normal. “

#Amidst this situation, the #Kashmir #Chamber of #Commerce and #Industry (KCCI) has been trying to encourage young entrepreneurs to keep their businesses afloat.

“Better to keep him on life support than to let him die. #We know it is difficult, ”acknowledges KCCI #President #Sheikh #Ashiq. #Sarwar kashani





[ source link ]
https://www.sinembargo.mx/30-12-2020/3914311

#lost #owe #millions #ready #sell #kidney #economic #blow #confinement

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