UT News Service | Shillong, Aug 17: An online platform for micro entrepreneurs of Meghalaya was launched in Jowai, aiming to take local goods from the state to the rest of the country.
The initiative, Omechan, will act as an online aggregator and was launched on Independence Day in the presence of Jowai MLA Wailadmiki Shylla with the intention to give hope to entrepreneurs who have been badly affected by the current economic scenario brought about by the devastating effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The idea of starting the new business aggregator online platform in Jaiñtia Hills region came after we noticed how the lockdown due to Covid-19 pandemic has badly affected the local and rural economy of artisans, food producers and farmers,” Omechan head, Russel Nongrum said in his introductory speech on the day.
Omechan is led by a small group of young, motivated people working together to make a difference for themselves and the rural population.
Non-perishable goods will be the first on the site and Omechan has already tied up with artisans working with pottery, handicrafts and weaving. Omechan will branch out into foods soon, such as sellers of cinnamon, turmeric, pepper and pickles.
Nongrum has experience of such work after having provided essential commodities through Syllad, another website, during the initial stages of the coronavirus lockdown when more than 1,000 households were provided with essential goods via the platform.
Prior to the launching of the portal, Omechan also organised a one-day workshop on online selling for local entrepreneurs on August 13 at the District Commerce and Industries Centre, Jowai. Around 20 local entrepreneurs from the handicrafts and handloom sectors attended the workshop.
“Artisans, handicraft makers and weavers are requested to register with Omechan to be able to sell their products online to enhance their income,” Shylla said in his speech as chief guest.
Secretary of the Society for Urban Rural Empowerment (SURE) HH Mohrmen said, “The future is online and entrepreneurs should look beyond the traditional markets by trying to make use of online avenues.”