Conrad urges youth to take advantage of govt’s welfare programmes; First pavers and stone industry of Garo Hills inaugurated at Rongkem

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HT Bureau

SHILLONG, Sept 9: Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K. Sangma on Saturday inaugurated the first pavers and stone industry of Garo Hills at Rongkem near Samanda in East Garo Hills in presence of local MLA Marcuise Marak and chief advisor to the chief minister Thomas A. Sangma.

The industry styled as Marak Pavers and Stone Industry initiated by young entrepreneur Georgemon S. Marak of Williamnagar is a boon for Garo Hills, as it will address the gap and shortage of concrete pavers and stone availability in the region.

Speaking at the launch Georgemon Marak said, “Marak Pavers aims at providing quality product and meeting delivery commitments to the customers. All our products, from pavers block to stone chips are locally manufactured using high end export quality raw materials and advance technology machineries. The factory has a capacity of producing 20,000 pavers block and 1000 metric ton stone chips in a day.”

Congratulating Marak Pavers during the inauguration programme, the chief minister said,  “Government can act as a catalyst and create the ecosystem. However, it is incumbent on the people and the youth to become entrepreneurs and looks for options to initiate business ventures. Government should not do business but facilitate business. I am happy that Georgemon Marak has set an example for the youth of Garo Hills.”

Talking elaborately on promotion of entrepreneurship in Meghalaya, the chief minister said that through jackfruit mission government would train about 300 entrepreneurs in food processing, packaging and market linkage. “We have earmarked Rs 80 cr for initiating different activities to promote jackfruit in the state and empower youth to become self-employed,” he added.

Urging the youth to take advantage of different welfare programme of the government, he said, “The government has budgeted 200 cr under diary mission to empower youth for initiating entrepreneurship. We will facilitate training and provide technical knowhow on advanced technology for processing dairy products. However, people have to take the opportunity and come up with their business plan and ideas to take advantage of the scheme.”

“Government will make policy and aid support but people have to come forward to take advantage of such programmes. Unless and until entrepreneurs initiate there is no way forward to help them. Our job as a government is to frame policy to help our people,” he added.

Encouraging the youth to become entrepreneurs, he said that economic development of Meghalaya largely depends on development of business and entrepreneurship, which will open opportunities for employment.

“The centre has recently reviewed the industrial policy for Northeast. We are also coming up with a policy to give the best possible support to our entrepreneurs, industrialist and business community to facilitate and promote business,” he said.

He also informed that to develop entrepreneurship spirit amongst the youth, the government would shortly organise business plan competitions and will empower the youth with necessary skills on writing proposals, initiate market research, etc. “We will award seed money for the best business plan at regional as well as district level,” he added.

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