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Last updated: 13 Mar, 2018  

udyam.mitra.9.thmb.jpg Another MSME portal: will it serve its purpose

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Bikky Khosla | 13 Mar, 2018
The MSME ministry last week launched a web portal for women entrepreneurs of the country. Called 'Udyam Sakhi', the platform is designed--according to official claims--to be "a network for nurturing entrepreneurship and creating business models for low-cost products and services in order to empower women and make them self-reliant and self-sufficient". While launching the portal, the MSME minister viewed that women in India can play a vital role in the growth of the economy. All this sounds good.

According to government data, India has around 8 million women who have started and are running their own businesses, and definitely any new development toward their promotion is a welcome one. Getting the news, I couldn't help visiting the website, and two sections on its homepage--'Entrepreneurship Learning Tools' and 'Information/Resources'-- immediately attracted my attention. But delving deep I found the information--though helpful to some degree-- not much fresh.

Meanwhile, a few entrepreneurs I'm in touch with have informed that the 'Create an Account' option on the site is not working. It leads to a '404 (Page Not Found) Error’. If it is really so then it is the time for the ministry to focus on stepping up its commitment. These things may be small to some, but they clearly reflect lack of dedication, which is a concern, particularly in the background of scores of similar complaints raised time and again in relation to most of the websites maintained by the ministry.

In another development, the government has formed a Steering Committee to study issues relating to development of Fintech in India. The objective is to ease the regulations and generate enhanced entrepreneurship in the field. An official release adds that the committee will also focus on how Fintech can be leveraged to enhance financial inclusion of MSMEs. Needless to say, this is a welcome development, but again it is the level of commitment that will finally determine its outcomes.

I invite your opinions.

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