No Reason To Oppose National Monetisation Pipeline, Says Omar Abdullah


It is important to draw a distinction between privatisation, monetisation, Omar Abdullah said (File)


Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on Wednesday said he saw no reason to oppose the National Monetisation Pipeline (NMP) and hoped that the bidding process will be transparent.

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

The asset monetisation plan will not involve the selling of land, and it is about monetising brownfield assets, the minister has said.

“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 have been privatised, I would then have questioned the government,” Mr Abdullah said.

It is important to draw a distinction between privatisation and monetisation, he added. “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 a transparent bidding system. “I hope that the process that is followed is transparent.”

Omar Abdullah said that his opposition was to heavily taxing fuel, including petrol and diesel, and increasing prices of gas cylinders.

Speaking about the threat from the Taliban amid a call by Al-Qaeda for the liberation of Kashmir, Omar 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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