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Leather MSMEs in distress as UP Govt plans shifting of Kanpur tanneries

 New Delhi, Apr 17 (KNN) The newly elected government in Uttar Pradesh led by Yogi Adityanath has favoured the shifting of the tanning industry to a different location as the tanneries are found releasing toxic waste into the river Ganga in Kanpur.

During a high level meeting held at the NGT, the Yogi government announced its intention about shifting the industry. This has caused a great level of distress among the MSMEs operating in the region. The UP government has told the National Green Tribunal that the state government is looking for a new site for setting up of the leather units, which are the "major source of pollution" in Ganga.

Talking to KNN, Malik from Karamat Tannery in Kanpur grieved that the government’s plan of shifting the tanning industry with nearly 500 units that employs around 2-3 million people, is very disastrous for the city. Acknowledging the need to protect the environment Malik said “While protection of Ganga is indeed important, we are willing to contribute for the treatment plans if the government provides adequate support for the same.

Talking to KNN, Sushil Sadana, Vice President of the Indian Industries Association said that shifting the tanneries is not a feasible option.

He further cited the method that was adapted by the hosiery industry in Ludhiana recently where the government assisted the hosiery MSMEs to set up common plants.  “The Government must take into consideration alternatives instead of shifting the entire industry. Setting up of common treatment plants is the best solution. The government should set these in clusters and may charge the industries in the region for the maintenance of these plants” he said.

The previous government led by Akhilesh Yadav had opposed the idea of shifting of the tanneries, saying the moving of tannery hubs to some other place was almost impossible due to the scarcity of land in the city. (KNN/ DA)