Over the years, young entrepreneurs from the northeast region have made their mark in different parts of the country through their unique start-ups in various sectors.
To encourage and motivate young start-up entrepreneurs of the northeast region and Nagaland in particular, the state hosted a three-day-long state-level exhibition and entrepreneurship conclave in the city of Dimapur.
Themed as 'Encouraging entrepreneurship emergence,' the event aimed at providing the entrepreneurs with a platform to showcase their products at the national level.
The exhibition-cum-conclave under the National Scheduled caste-Scheduled Tribe Hub (NSSH) was jointly orgsed by Union Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Nagaland Industrial Development Corporation Limited (NIDC), and the state government's Department of Industries and Commerce.
Lithrongla G Chishi, Principal Secretary, Nagaland's Department of Industries and Commerce, said the "state-level mega exhibition and entrepreneur conclave is a programme under the Ministry of MSME."
Talking about the conclave's objective, Chishi said: "We have taken this programme all over the state creating awareness on how to set up enterprise; how to be a banker and also what are the schemes provided by the Centre where they have to buy back from SC and ST entrepreneurs by all the Central and government orgsations and departments."
"We brought all the people under one platform and being able to create awareness and also trained them. Under this SC-ST hub, we have trained more than 154 people," Chishi added.
The conclave featured 40 stalls by exhibitors from different sectors, who showcased a wide variety of products such as bamboo mobile stands, bamboo showpieces and other decorative items.
Handcrafted items such as beauty products, earrings and interesting glass art pieces also grabbed the attention of the visitors.
Orgc foodstuffs, embellished locally made jewellery and innovative products from technological sectors were also put on display by the entrepreneurs of Nagaland Tool Room and Training Centre.
Moreover, during the event, seven beneficiaries were handed over Stand up India (SUI) loans under the Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana scheme.
Elaborating upon the current startup scenario of the region, the founder of Youth Net Nagaland Hek Jakhalu Kense said: "We all are first-generation entrepreneurs. So, we need a lot of handholding, which is lacking. Mentorship is also lacking. Even access to different types of knowledge and skills are lacking.
"We have capable, qualified and talented young Nagas who are venturing into entrepreneurship but to upscale and be sustainable, it is also important that the government has the right ecosystem for the entrepreneurship to develop," said Kense.
In her keynote speech at the conclave, the director of MSME, Mercy Epao pointed out that micro, small and medium enterprises have emerged as a big and vibrant sector contributing to as much as 29 per cent of India's GDP and 49 per cent of the total exports.
Speaking in the context of northeast India, the director said that in Nagaland, MSME is the right sector since large industries are not feasible in the region due to its topography and eco-systems. Hence, such entrepreneurship conclaves orgsed at the grassroots level facilitate the growth of tribal entrepreneurs and provides them with opportunities to contribute largely to the mainstream economy.
( With inputs from ANI )