Srinagar, Apr 27: J&K Bank Chairman & MD R K Chhibber today had a detailed interaction with the representatives of Hotel & Restaurant Association, Katra (HRAK) and Federation of Hotels, Restaurants, Industries and Commerce of Jammu Region (FHRICJR) led by its Chairman Rakesh Wazir in Katra.
The meeting was attended by the Bank’s Zonal Head Anokh Singh, Cluster Head Udhampur Sanjeev Kumar, and Head BU Katra Dherraj Sharma besides President Municipal Committee, Katra BimalIndu, former president HRAK Shiv Kumar Sharma, Block Development Chairmen (BDC) Katra, Sham Lal and BDC Panthel Chander Mohan, Arun Sharma, Rakesh Sharma, Sohan Lal, Anil Kumar etc.
Commenting upon the relationship between hotel industry and J&K bank, Rakesh Wazir said that both have a historic bond and most of the hotels and business activities at Katrahave been financed by the Bank. However, he asserted, soon after the Covid19 pandemic badly affected the Yatra to holy shrine of Mata Vaishno Devi last year,the Bank came to the rescue of the hospitality industry by extending help through various tailored schemes like Business Support Loan as well as GECL1.0 and GECL2.0.
Requesting the CMD to extend the helping hand further and provide financial help to the Katra Town’s business sector – solely linked with Mata Vaishno Devi Yatra – that has again been effected due to the second-wave of CovidPandemic, he said, “There is a need for waiver of interest during the Covid period besides increase in further moratorium period of the existing loans as the current situation has increased the financial difficulties and cash-flow mismatches.”
During the interaction, other participants also raised certain issues of public concern like non acceptance of properties classified asabadideh in revenue records, extending support to entrepreneurs and rural population who also need some help during the current crisis like situation and people living in rural areas.
While giving a very patient hearing to the view-points of all the participants, Chairman & MD R K Chhibber asserted that tourism is the back bone of J&K economy and the bank shall provide every help, and assistance to Tourism and Hotel Industry.
He acknowledged the fact that Tourism Sector in general and Hotels in Katra and other Tourist spots of Union Territory of J&K in particular were worst sufferers due to the ongoing pandemic.
“J&K Bank shall continue to stand with business community during the current crisis as we have stood by our customers in every thick and”, he asserted.
He said that Bank is also offering the central government’s Guaranteed Emergency Credit Line 3.0(GECL 3.0) scheme for Hospitality, Travel & Tourism and Leisure& Sporting Sectors, wherein additional Working capital term Loan of upto 40% of the balance outstanding in loans availed as on February 29, 2020 can be extended to the borrowers for meeting their operational liabilities and to restart the business.
Notably, as per the newly launched GECL 3.0 scheme, borrowers in these sectors, which had earlier availed 20% loan under GECL1.0 and GECL 2.0 can avail further 20% additional loan. There is no requirement of any fresh collateral security, no processing fee or pre-payment penalty in this loan and the same is re-payable in relaxed period of 48 equated monthly installments after an initial moratorium period of 24 months.
Stressing upon the businessmen associated with these sectors to avail the maximum benefits of this scheme, the CMD said that if need arises, a tailor made scheme can be launched within the regulatory framework of RBI for the benefit of genuine borrowers.
Regarding providing loans to new entrepreneurs, the CMD said that bank has bouquet of financial products catering to all business segments and entrepreneurs desirous of availing loans from the bank can approach any Business units for the same. On the issue of AbadiDeh Land, he assured to look into the matter within the legal framework of UT of J&K.
On the issue of loans to people in rural areas, he emphasized that Bank’s primary focus is on providing loans in retail segments and to uplift the rural economy by providing loans under various Government sponsored schemes. He requested all the participants to spread the message of Bank among masses to avail retail and agriculture and allied activities loans from the J&K Bank.
All the participants thanked the Chairman and MD for giving a patient hearing listening to their demands and assuring to extend a helping hand in this period of crisis.