It is important to draw a distinction between privatisation and monetisation, says the National Conference leader

Former J&K Chief Minister Omar Abdullah. File   | Photo Credit: PTI

It is important to draw a distinction between privatisation and monetisation, says the National Conference leader

Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah on Wednesday, September 1, 2020 said he saw no reason to oppose the National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP), but hoped that the process of bidding would be transparent.

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has announced the ₹6 lakh crore scheme that will look to unlock value in infrastructure assets across sectors ranging from power to road and railways.

She also said that the asset monetisation plan would not involve selling of land, and it is about monetising brownfield assets.

"I see no reason why I should oppose a scheme that it is looking to monetise an asset that otherwise is not giving me a suitable return. If the same asset would be privatised, I would then have asked questions to the government," Mr. Abdullah said.

He was replying to a question on the NMP scheme of the central government.

Mr. Abdullah further said it is important to draw a distinction between privatisation and monetisation. "Monetisation is giving an asset on lease but not transferring the ownership of that asset," he said.

The National Conference vice-president said he hopes that there will be transparent bidding system.

"I hope that the process that is followed is transparent," he said.

He added that his opposition was to heavily taxing fuel, including petrol and diesel, and increasing prices of gas cylinders.

Replying to another question on the threat of the Taliban in the wake of a call by the Al-Qaeda for liberation of Kashmir, Mr. Abdullah said that he does not have any such information.

"What has happened in Afghanistan is before you all. Whether it will affect J&K or not, the central government can answer, not me," he added.

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