Relief package of Rs 50 lakh for the children of diamond workers was announced by Gems and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) today at the International Gems and Jewellery Expo-Sparkle at Surat.
"We have decided to release a package of Rs 50 lakh to fund the education of children of diamond workers," Chairman of GJEPC Vasanth Mehta said.
The package comes in the backdrop of job retrenchment speculations in diamond industry at Surat.
The diamond industry here had extended the Diwali vacation period this year from December 8 to 15 and later announced to re-open units on January 1, fuelling speculations of largescale retrenchments here.
Due to an over stretched vacation period in Surat a few family members of diamond workers allegedly committed suicide and also stopped sending their children to schools due to acute financial crunch, sources said.
However, on the intervention of government 70 per cent of the diamond units resumed operations.
"Although, their has been no major lay off's till now but the 10,000 odd Surat based diamond polishing units are facing the heat of meltdown, and are seriously contemplating to cut on production by reducing inventories," industry sources said adding "fuelling apprehensions of retrenchments here."
Taking note of the emerging crisis Chief Minister Narendra Modi has urged the union government to extend its full support to the diamond industry here.
"Union Government can easily provide rough diamonds to small and medium polishing enterprises here from the Centre PSU's like Hindustan Diamonds. This will not only help boost the economy, but will also create employment, Modi said.