Businesses that braved bullets in the Kashmir valley may shut shop because of the global financial meltdown, causing job losses in a society already facing high unemployment rates, Jammu and Kashmir Bank chairman Haseeb Drabu has said.
"Things are going to be worse in the coming months with Kashmir being no exception to the general trend that has given sleepless nights to the policy makers and economist world over," said Drabu, also the economic adviser to the state government, during a televised discussion to be aired by public broadcaster Doordarshan next week.
Although investments have been few and far between in the valley, which has had to live under the shadow of attacks by militants from across the border since 1989, the economist said there was a risk that even those who had invested could wind up operations.
People could lose their jobs and companies in the business of cellular services and other areas may wind up operations, he said, advising the youth to embrace entrepreneurship, especially in the field of Information Technology, instead of hankering for government jobs.
"In the past few years, revolution in the IT industry made places like Bangalore and Hyderabad the most sought after IT hubs generating job opportunities for lakhs of IT professionals but unfortunately our state... failed to capitalise," he said.
The J&K Bank chairman, however, said his own organisation would be creating thousands of jobs for the youth of Valley in financial services which he said is an industry worth Rs 3 trillion in sub-continent.