The Telangana government will provide one acre of land in Hyderabad and Rs.5 crore financial assistance for setting up of a Dalit entrepreneur incubation centre.
Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao announced this in response to a demand from the Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DICCI) here on Friday.
Mr. Rao, addressing the three-day industrial and trade expo of DICCI that opened at Hitex here, added that Dalit entrepreneurs desirous of taking up new ventures would also qualify for the benefits being extended by the State government to Dalit entrepreneurs of Telangana.
“All doors are open... Dalit entrepreneurs can come and invest. We will extend the same benefits to them too,” said the Chief Minister, who spoke extensively in Hindi.
Earlier, founder chairman of DICCI, Milind Kamble, hailed Telangana’s industrial policy as ‘the best’. “It is also the most Dalit friendly industrial policy,” he said.
Expressing happiness at DICCI’s emphasis that its members want connections and not concessions and on giving jobs instead of seeking jobs, the Chief Minister said the State government had decided to set aside Rs.5 crore for a scheme under which margin money assistance will be extended to Dalit entrepreneurs. This decision was taken in view of difficulties faced by such entrepreneurs while accessing bank credit.
Promising government support, Mr. Rao said it was also decided to train 200 SC/ST contractors. The State government will allocate a portion of its works to them, he added.
Highlighting the features of the new industrial policy, he said 22 per cent of land in industrial estates would be earmarked for SC/ST entrepreneurs.
Union Minister for Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman said that with effect from April 1, the public procurement policy, under which a portion of the requirements of government agencies have to be sourced from enterprises run by SC/ST, will come into force. According to the stipulation, four per cent of the 20 per cent procurement reserved for SME units has to be from SC/ST units.
Industrialist and past chairman of CII, Adi Godrej, said that the industry had always been supportive of inclusive growth. Voluntary commitment rather than one mandated is important to create a society of equal opportunities.