Helmet maker Steelbird offers to set up plant in J&K

 An aerial view shows deserted roads during restrictions in Jammu. Reuters photo

Asia's largest helmet manufacturer Steelbird Hi-tech India on Tuesday offered to set up a manufacturing plant in Jammu & Kashmir, a day after article 35A granting special status to the state was revoked by the government.

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This will help the Kashmir Valley kickstart a new industrial revolution and employment for the citizens, said Steelbird in a statement welcoming the government's move.

"It is a much-awaited move by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah to overrule Article 370. This fantastic move ensures that the Valley enters the Indian mainstream and becomes a part of our nation’s collective growth," said Steelbird Helmets Chairman Subhash Kapur.

Until now, most of the manufacturing activity in J&K has remained restricted to the state's inherent capacities in agriculture and handicraft, it added.

"We think it will kickstart with the companies tying up with established local players to build the ecosystem. This is how most cities and states grow and we see it as a great opportunity for localites first," said Steelbird Helmets MD Rajeev Kapur.

"We plan to come up with manufacturing facility in accordance to the upcoming investor summit in the month of October. We hope the decisions will allow the businesses to operate freely under the same rules in the Valley," he added.

Steelbird already has invested Rs 150 crore in the manufacturing plants at Baddi, Himachal Pradesh and is now planning to enhance the production capacity to 44,500 helmets a day.

It intends to replicate the same success story for the Valley as well, the statement added.

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