70% of Karnataka industries resume work amid lockdown
ANI

Bengaluru: About 70 per cent of industries across Karnataka resumed operations after restrictions were relaxed during the extended lockdown, an official said on Thursday.

"About 70 per cent of industries have resumed operations in the state after restrictions of the guidelines were relaxed since May 4 when the lockdown was extended for the third time till May 17," an official told IANS after Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa reviewed the functioning of the state industry department with Minister Jagadish Shettar and top officials here.

Industrial activity across the southern state was halted abruptly when the 21-day lockdown was suddenly enforced from March 25 to April 13 to contain the Covid spread and extended thrice since then up to May 31, with its norms eased in every phase to revive the economy battered by the pandemic.

"The department is drafting a special incentive scheme to attract investments from across the country and overseas, especially from China where industries have evinced interest in setting up their operations in other countries like India in the post-Covid period," said the official.

The state government has set up a special task force to attract global firms keen on relocating their operations from China after their functioning was affected by the coronavirus spread in the mainland.

"The state government had also amended the Land Reforms Act in March to simplify the procedure for buying land by prospective industrialists and investors in the state, recalled the official.

On Prime Minister Narendra Modi's directive, the state government has told the districts to simplify the land acquisition process for entrepreneurs and investors.

"Measures have been taken to simplify the process of setting up industries at every district level for job creation and economic recovery by turning the Covid challenge into an opportunity," asserted the official.

On the Central government's advisory, 22 manufacturing companies have been producing PPE (personal protection equipment) kits since the lockdown began in March third week.

"Similarly, four firms are manufacturing ventilators and about 40 distilleries have been granted licence to make sanitizers to minimize their import from China and other countries.

The Chief Minister also reviewed the performance of the labour department and directed it to register all workers from across the state and other states with the unorgainsed labourers' welfare board.

State Labour Minister Shivaram Hebbar, Shettar and Chief Secretary T.M. Vijay Bhaskar participated in the review meeting along with senior officials.

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