PM interacts with young entrepreneurs in Srinagar

Srinagar, March 7 (UNI) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday interacted with Kashmiri entrepreneurs during his visit here and listened to their success stories.

The first entrepreneur to interact with the PM was Nazim Nazeer, a beekeeper from south Kashmir’s Pulwama, who started his journey as a student.

Nazim told the Prime Minister about how he expanded his business by availing benefits from the government. He initially bought 25 boxes for beekeeping at a 50 percent subsidy.

He also threw light on his economic growth, as he gradually expanded to 200 boxes for beekeeping by availing Rs 5 lakhs under the Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme.

This led to Nazim building a brand for himself and creating a website that further generated thousands of orders worth about 5000 kilograms across the nation, growing his business to almost 2000 beekeeping boxes and engaging about 100 youth from the region.

He further informed the Prime Minister about receiving an FPO in 2023 which has only helped him grow his business. He also thanked the Prime Minister for launching the Digital India initiative that has transformed the fintech landscape in the country.

The Prime Minister lauded Nazim’s effort in leading the way to a sweet revolution in Jammu & Kashmir and congratulated him on his success.

Upon the Prime Minister’s enquiry about getting initial support from the government to establish the business, Nazim said that even though he faced initial difficulty, the Department of Agriculture came forward and supported his cause.

Noting that the business of beekeeping is a fairly new sector, the Prime Minister highlighted its benefits and said that bees, in a way, work like farm laborers making it beneficial for crops.

Nazim said that landowners are ready to offer land for beekeeping at no cost as the process is also beneficial for the farmers.

The Prime Minister suggested Nazim research the honey produced in Central Asia around the Hindu Kush mountains and also asked him to look towards crafting a new taste for honey by growing specific flowers around the boxes as it is a niche market. He also mentioned similar successful efforts in Uttarakhand. Prime Minister Modi expressed delight at Acacia Honey’s price going up to Rs 1000 per kg from Rs 400 per kg due to high demand across the world.

The Prime Minister lauded the clarity of thought and vision, and the courage shown by Nazim in running his business and also congratulated his parents.

He said that Nazim is also giving direction to the youth of India and becoming an inspiration.

A young girl, Ahtesham Majid Bhat of Srinagar, who runs a bakery unit, informed the PM virtually about the innovations.

She was supported by the incubation centre at the Government Polytechnic for Women Skill Development.

The Government single window system helped her and her team in getting all the NoCs from various departments.

The Prime Minister told her that in the last 10 years, the government has been providing all the support to the crores of youth in realizing their startup dreams.

The Prime Minister praised her for involving her friends from different districts in her entrepreneurial ventures.

“It is our efforts that the ideas of our youth do not suffer from the deficiency of resources and finance. They should move with confidence. These daughters of Jammu and Kashmir are creating new inspiring examples for the youth of the entire nation”, the Prime Minister said.

He praised them for taking care of the underprivileged daughters.

Hamida Bano of Ganderbal, who is involved in the dairy business. informed the Prime Minister that she benefited from the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM) and opened a processing unit for milk products and she employed other women also.

She also informed the Prime Minister about the quality check, packaging and marketing of products.

Her milk products are devoid of preservatives and she informed the Prime Minister about the elaborate way of marketing her fragile product.

The Prime Minister praised her for her business acumen and also for carrying on the work of nutrition. He also complimented her for taking care of quality and doing her business in an environment-friendly way.

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