Over 19k MSMEs hit due to floods in Ukd; industry seeks relief

The recent natural disasters in Uttarakhand hit more than 19,000 registered micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) causing an estimated Rs. 531.20 crore loss to the sector, Industry Association of Uttarakhand (IAU), an apex body of MSMEs of the state, informed Tuesday.

According to the IAU data a total of 19,550 registered MSMEs have been set up in the worst-affected districts of Rudraprayag, Uttarkashi, Chamoli, Tehri, Pithoragarh, Almora and Pauri, entailing investments of Rs 531 crore. Besides this, there is no information of large numbers of micro units in the unorganised sector.

"A large numbers of MSME units have been affected by the heavy rains, floods and landslides in the seven worst-affected districts of Rudraprayag, Uttarkashi, Chamoli, Tehri, Pithoragarh, Almora and Pauri. We have prepared this data on the basis of these seven districts," President of the IAU, Pankaj Gupta told SME Times on phone.

"Around 43,000 people are employed in those enterprises," said IAU chief.

Rudraprayag and Uttarkashi are the majorly effected districts. The types of business activities are effected due to flood includes; Pharmaceuticals, Hotel Industry, Tour & Travel Operator, Eateries, Cabs (847 Cabs operate from Mussoorie Bus Stand and 230 registered Cab operate from Rispana Pull & Rishikesh) Bakery, Food Processing, Agriculture (Fruits & Vegetable effected), Tourism Industry, Hotel, Restaurant, Resorts, Mini Dhabas, Fabrication Workshop, Atta Chakki, Garments, Handloom and Handicrafts etc.

Hotel - Alaknanda, Mandakini and 90 others Small Hotels, Resorts/ Dhabas, PMEGP Units, Ringal,Tin Box, Dairy, Fabrication, Auto Workshop, etc. are the effected units in Rudrapraya, it said.

Meanwhile, in a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, he has called for a special package for these MSMEs and increased targets under the Prime Minister Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) in view of the calamity. Gupta in a statement has also sought a five percent point cut in interest rates on loans for these enterprises for the next three years.

Also the apex industry body, Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industries (ASSOCHAM) Sunday urged the Central government for a special package of Rs 10,000 crore for rehabilitation and redevelopment work in disaster-hit Uttarakhand, reports media.

The demand is based on recommendation of an ASSOCHAM team which surveyed the affected areas in the worst-hit Rudraprayag, Uttarkashi and Chamoli districts to prepare an estimate of the devastation caused to infrastructure and villages by the recent natural calamity, informed DS Rawat, Secretary General, ASSOCHAM.

However, in a bid to stand by thousands of people affected by the recent natural calamity in Uttarakhand, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) has geared up to lend a helping hand to the distressed. A Special Task Force has been formed to provide relief to the flood devastated state. The Himalayan Tsunami has claimed thousands of lives so far, while hundreds are still stranded.

After communicating with the various Government Agencies, Army, NGOs and Disaster Management Cell, Uttarakhand, an interim assessment of the situation has been done and relief & rehabilitation operations in the affected areas have been planned by CII.

"The industry is very much committed to provide maximum support to the victims as well as the district administration in providing relief and rehabilitation measures. The damage caused to the hill state by the cloud bursts, floods and landslides is massive and it will take a long time to "rebuild Uttarakhand". CII would lend its full support for the same," said Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, CII.

"CII has been constantly coordinating with the State Government and district administration of the impacted areas to channelize CII Foundation's efforts towards providing immediate relief and rehabilitation support," added Banerjee.