Introduction to Blog

I launched the website and the Blog after having spoken to government officials, political analysts and security experts specializing in South Asian affairs from three continents. The feedback was uniformly consistent. The bottom line is that when Kashmiris are suffering and the world has its own set of priorities, we need to find ways to help each other. We must be realistic, go beyond polemics and demagoguery, and propose innovative ideas that will bring peace, justice and prosperity in all of Jammu and Kashmir.

The author had two reasons to create this blog. First, it was to address the question that was being asked repeatedly, especially, by journalists and other observers in the U.S., U.K., and Canada, inquiring whether the Kashmiri society was concerned about social, cultural and environmental challenges in the valley given that only political upheaval and violence were reported or highlighted by media.

Second, the author has covered the entire spectrum of societal issues and challenges facing Kashmiri people over an 8-year period with the exception of politics given that politics gets all the exposure at the expense of REAL CHALLENGES that will likely result in irreversible degradation in the quality of life and the standard of living for future generations of Kashmiris to come.

The author stopped adding additional material to the Blog once it was felt that most, if not all, concerns, challenges and issues facing the Kashmiri society are cataloged in the Blog. There are over 1900 entries in the Blog and most commentaries include short biographical sketches of authors to bring readers close to the essence of Kashmir. Unfortunately, the 8-year assessment also indicates that neither Kashmiri civil society, nor intellectuals or political leadership have any inclination or enthusiasm in pursuing issues that do not coincide with their vested political agendas. What it means for the future of Kashmiri children and their children is unfathomable. But the evidence is all laid out.

This Blog is a reality check on Kashmir. It is a historical record of how Kashmir lost its way.

Vijay Sazawal, Ph.D.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Barter Trade Across LOC Requires Trust and in Kashmir There is a Trust Deficit

Kashmiri traders may not admit it publicly, but Indian market prices are better than what across-the-LOC has to offer

More Kashmir based firms opt for Poonch route

Jammu: More Kashmir based business firms have started giving preference to cross-LoC trade from Poonch-Rawlakote route in Jammu region instead of Uri-Muzaffarabad in the Valley, mainly due to the fact that there was no report of any misunderstanding between the traders importing and exporting items on the barter system.

Only this week, two new trading companies from Kulgam district in the Kashmir valley conducted trade with PoK based firms through Poonch-Rawlakote route exporting tonnes of imli and rajmash.

Confirming that two new companies from the Valley joined the cross-LoC trade through Chakan-Da-Bagh route this Tuesday and Wednesday, official sources said there was no bar on the businessmen of entire Jammu and Kashmir to carry out trade with their counterparts in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) from either of the two routes—Poonch-Rawlakote and Uri-Muzaffarabad.

However, they declined to comment on the reasons for Kashmir based traders opting for Poonch-Rawlakote route instead of Uri-Muzaffarabad.

Reports said Business Lines Trading Company, Kulgam conducted trade with Business Lines Trading Company, Muzaffarabad exporting tonnes of imli.

Mehmood Dar, Proprietor of Business Lines, Kulgam and Zahoor Dar, Proprietor of Business Lines, Muzaffarabad were in blood relation, reports said, adding they were divided in 1971 when Zahoor Dar left for PoK.

Both of them have kept same names of their company and were reported to be dealing in wholesale business of karyana and other items.

Yet another firm from the Kashmir valley conducted trade with a Muzaffarabad based company from Poonch-Rawlakote route on Wednesday.

M/s SAT Traders, Yaripora (Kulgam) exported tonnes of rajmash to Maud Trading Company, Muzaffarabad.

Both the firms of Kashmir valley were, however, yet to receive items and the consignments from their trading partners in PoK. It couldn’t be ascertained as to which items they have asked for from their counterparts in other part of the divided State.

Prior to this, about half a dozen firms from the Kashmir valley had conducted cross-LoC trade from Poonch-Rawlakote route.

According to sources, most of the companies in both parts of the divided State, dealing with barter system of trade were fully satisfied with import-export of items. The companies on both sides were receiving an equal amount of items after working out the currency variation of India and Pakistan which was the major factor that none of them had any complaint with each other.

It may be mentioned here that in the absence of any currency guidelines between India and Pakistan, cross-LoC trade between two parts of divided State on both Poonch-Rawlakote and Uri-Muzaffarabad route, which were simultaneously opened on October 22 last year, was going on barter system.

(Daily Excelsior)

No comments: