India, Kumbh Mela is over and Uttar Pradesh’s tanning industry finds itself starting from zero: 1 billion from foreign revenue in smoke

The last ritualistic bath into the Ganges River took place on March 4th, and the date marks the end of the Hindu celebration that takes place every three years. But for the tanneries operating in the Uttar Pradesh region, forced to shut-down for three months by the local authorities, it is now time to start from zero. According to Council for Leather Exports, the 90 days stop caused the loss of 1 billion from foreign revenue. “International clients don’t wait – say representatives of CLE to Times of India – and during these months they took their business to Bangladesh’s tanneries for the supply of soft leather, and to Pakistan’s tanners for buffalo hides”. As the operators of the leather industry of Uttar Pradesh explained to us, it is hard to survive with a three-months long shut-down. The non-active production lines left over half-a-million people with no work, while the entire revenue stream was left weakened and the local economy had no revenue sources. Small Tanneries Association’s top executives complain that production is inactive, and the government has destroyed a “solid industry recognized in the world”. It is now useless to wait for the authorities in the Uttar Pradesh region to give the permission to work to tanneries, “because when there are no orders, there is no work”, explains an Iranian entrepreneur who has lived in Kanpur for 25 years. He is one of the many that has made a request for a lot in the Aurangabad region to re-open his activity. The future only seems to be in Bantala for the operators left disappointed by Kanpur. This area is where Calcutta Leather Complex is located: in this location there are “lots available on which to build. Such space is impossible to find in Uttar Pradesh, even in the outskirt areas”, state Indian media sources.

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