Tribune News Service
Dharamsala, September 15
With bank moratorium on loans ending on August 31, the hoteliers in Dharamsala region who had raised loans to construct properties have started getting notices for payment of installments. With no earning for the past six months, the bank notices have caused panic among hoteliers.
Ashwani Bamba, president of the Upper Dharamsala Hotel and Restaurant Association, while talking to The Tribune, said that many hoteliers are under stress due to bank notices. They have not been able to earn anything for the about six months and wonder from where they would give their installments, he said.
Bamba said that the scheme floated by the state government to provide credit of Rs 15 lakh to hoteliers at subsidised rates was a failure. Many hoteliers have approached the cooperative banks and other banks to avail benefits of the scheme. However, the banks are demanding NOC from other banks from which hoteliers had raised loans and bank guarantees for extending the credit line. Under such conditions none of the hoteliers would be able to avail loan under the government scheme, he said.
Sanjeev Gandhi, general secretary of the Smart City Dharamsala Hotel Association, said that they had demanded various concessions from the state government to provide direct financial relief to the hotel industry. “We had demanded that the power charges should be levied on hoteliers at domestic rates rather than commercial till the industry picks up again and waiving off of all annual licence fees and property taxes. However, till date the state government has not provided any such relief to the hotel and tourism industry in the state,” he said.
The hoteliers are also questioning the continuing the restrictions imposed on arrival of tourists in the state. Instead of restrictions on tourists, the state should ramp up its testing facilities. Jammu and Kashmir was providing rapid testing facilities for tourists coming to the state at its own cost. The Uttarakhand Government was providing the facilities at state border.
However, the Himachal Government was not providing any such checking facility at the border but was just imposing restrictions of tourists which was hitting the tourism industry, the hoteliers alleged.
Sources here said that the hoteliers and people associated with tourism, who are now under financial stress, are planning an agitation in the coming days to press for their demands. Many of them are of the view that in case the government does not extends a helping hand, they might be forced to sell their properties due to the financial stress.
Rue curbs on tourists
- The hoteliers are questioning the continuing restrictions imposed on arrival of tourists
- The state should ramp up its testing facilities, the hoteliers demanded
- The Uttarakhand government was providing the facilities at state border, they said
- Jammu and Kashmir was providing rapid testing facilities for tourists coming to the state at its own cost, the hoteliers said
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