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Director JKEDI tours South Kashmir; stresses on importance of building innovative startups

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ANANTNAG : The Director, Jammu and Kashmir Entrepreneurship Development Institute (JKEDI), Ajaz Ahmad Bhat today conducted an extensive tour of South Kashmir and interacted with youth and aspiring entrepreneurs at ITI Anantnag.

The Director visited a number of business units in the area to encourage enterprising entrepreneurs. He also felicitated Heena Rashid from district Pulwama for starting a trout fish farm at such a young age and inspiring women to pursue entrepreneurship as a career.

The visit was part of the outreach initiative of Director JKEDI to understand youth aspirations and make them aware of Government schemes.

During the past few months, he has held interactions with youth across the length and breadth of the Union Territory of J&K. These interactions are also significant as the Institute is planning to come up with various programs and initiatives for the youth of UT.

The Department of Industries and Commerce is in the process of revising the Startup Policy 2018. This is in order to make it more inclusive and friendly for the startups from J&K and envisions creating 3000 startups in five years.

“India is coming up as the favorite startup destination of the world and I firmly believe that J&K has huge potential and youth who choose entrepreneurship as a career have the power to change the economy of the UT. I have visited almost every district in J&K and interacted with youth. There is no shortage of passion and willingness to try something new. The Government of J&K is not behind and is offering these enterprising youth a number of schemes and is ready to offer any support,” said Director, JKEDI.

The Institute is working very hard to create a sustainable entrepreneurship ecosystem in J&K. We have organized a number of events in this direction, the latest being the first-ever startup leadership conclave for youth, he added.

Sneha Kumar who is undergoing a fellowship from the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India was also present on the occasion. Her interaction with the Director focused on the latest entrepreneurship initiatives and how they can work jointly with JKEDI. The Director accepted her request to provide faculty for an Entrepreneurship Development Program for ITI pass outs.

The Director during his interactions also stressed on the fact to undertake activities which are innovative and technology enabled. There is saturation in traditional activities and the need of the hour is to take calculated risks and provide meaningful solutions to the problems of society which will in turn improve the quality of life of the people, he added.

He was of the opinion that Startup friendly initiatives do not always mean providing large sums of money. JKEDI will try to help the youth by providing a startup friendly ecosystem where interactions with successful entrepreneurs and angel investors will be a norm. Support in business strategy and connecting with mentors from across the country will be arranged. The incubation centre at the Institute will work towards instilling an entrepreneurial spirit in youth of the UT.

Altaf Ahmad Dar, Supervisor ITI Anantnag; Arif Ahmad Khan, Communication Officer; Raiyees Manzoor, District Nodal Officer; Saba Nazir, Assistant Faculty; Imtiyaz Ahad Malla, Associate Project Manager from JKEDI among others were present on the occasion.