The Hush Post: Director Industries and Commerce, Punjab DPS Kharbanda held a meeting with Ludhiana’s prominent cycle and parts manufacturers on Monday at Avon Cycles. The agenda of the meeting was to identify the problems being faced by the industry for manufacturing the high-end components of bicycles and convince them to tie up with the Japanese companies interested to help bicycle industry of Ludhiana upgrade their technology and infrastructure. The tables were turned on Kharbanda when the businessmen vented out their anger against government on him.

In reply to Kharbanda’s proposal to local industrialists to tie up with Japanese companies to make high quality products, Managing Director of SK Bikes Subash Lakra said, “Our VAT refunds worth Rs 10 crore each are still pending with the government. If you help get us that refund we do not need support from Japan or any other country for technological upgradation or infrastructure, we can manage everything on our own.”

When Kharbanda tried to pacify the industrialists by committing to solve their problems, Lakra said, “By the time you will understand our industry’s problems, you will be transferred from this department. You will promise here but government will do nothing. This is what has been happening for the past 15 years. The tenure of senior officers in industry and allied department should be fixed for 5 years”. Lashing out against Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, he said, “We know how serious Punjab government is to resolve the industry’s problems. The chief minister had promised to meet us last week, instead of coming himself to listen to our grievances he sent Navjot Sidhu who did nothing except his shero-shayari in the meeting”.

Kharbanda also faced music from Managing Director of Hero Cycles SK Rai who gave him an earful on the delay in completion of cycle valley project and non-contribution of 20 percent share by state government in the common facility centre of bicycle industry. Other businessmen present in the meeting included Chairman-cum-Managing director of Avon Cycles Onkar Singh Pahwa, Joint Managing Director Rishi Pahwa, Managing Director of Hero Ecotech Gaurav Munjal and others.

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