Even as Tamil Nadu welcomed some of the measures such as collateral-free loans worth Rs 3 lakh crore, confederations of industries in the state seemed “depressed” after Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s slew of measures were announced.
Industry representatives who spoke to The Indian Express said crucial grievances they raised before the Finance Ministry in petitions were ignored.
“New definition of MSME will lead to confusions as both investment and turnover conditions to be satisfied to keep the status,” said S Anburajan, head of the apex body of MSMEs in the state.
A Shanmugavelayutham, a leader of the Tamil Nadu Small and Tiny Industries Association, said a large majority of industries in the state, which are about 10 lakh with 20 to over 100 workers each, haven’t paid wages for employees.
Shanmugavelayutham said MSMEs welcome the decision to provide collateral-free automatic loans worth Rs 3 lakh crore. “But again, the government is silent about the rate of interest,” he said, referring to a demand raised by industries to reduce the interest rate from 10 or above to 6 or 7 per cent.
Mohan C K, another leader of Tamil Nadu Small and Tiny Industries Association said a crucial demand to use the Employees’ State Insurance (ESI) to pay the workers, was also not heard.
The Industrial Estate Manufacturers Association had written to Sitharaman last month seeking relief and had reminded the Centre that the immediate priority of industries after the lockdown period will be to pay wages, electricity charges and the regular bank interests and “mainly bring back our workers and labourers back from their native places who have been trained all these years to work in our factory and workshops and to re-start all the idle machinery all these days due to lockdown.”
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