Bhubaneswar: Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Thursday said Odisha's development and creation of job opportunities for youth is not a political issue, but a collective responsibility.
"I appeal to the state government to set politics aside and augment efforts being taken by the Central government in creating employment opportunities for the youth in Odisha," said Pradhan at the National Scheduled Caste- Scheduled Tribe (SC-ST) Hub Regional Conclave and Exhibition in the state capital.
"Odisha has about 40% tribal and Dalit population. If we take the backward and poor people into account, 85% are living in rural areas. But for them, the biggest problem is unemployment. They are leaving their homes in search of jobs to other states," he said.
Pradhan said National SC-ST hub launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has become a mass movement in the MSME sector.
This initiative is a unique programme of grooming the SC-ST entrepreneurs who can create job opportunities for hundreds of youths, he added.
The Minister said the common facility center set up in the new Integrated Marketing Development Centre, 'Dharmapada Bhawan' will impart quality skill training and provide information as well as guidance to aspiring SC-ST entrepreneurs.
Union Tribal Affairs Minister Jual Oram said that an MoU signed between the National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC) and SAP would provide a designed module to SC-ST entrepreneurs through advanced software.
He advised young entrepreneurs to start new ventures to sell the minor forest produce and organic Agri products available in tribal-dominated districts.
Minister of State (Independent Charge) for MSME, Giriraj Singh said 'one district one product' scheme will be launched soon in Odisha.
He asked the ministry to conduct a survey of districts in the state on the potentials of starting new MSME units in aromatic, agro, marine food processing, organic food marketing, turmeric and ginger processing and other sections.
He said farmers of Kandhamal district will be taken to Maharashtra for a field visit to witness agro clusters in Maharashtra.
Singh also said 50,000 agro-entrepreneurs will be imparted training in Odisha.