President Ram Nath Kovind on June 27, 2018 launched the ‘Solar Charkha Mission’ on the occasion of the UN MSME Day to mark the important economic role played by Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).
Solar Charkha Mission
• The Solar Charkha Mission was launched with an aim to employ artisans in 50 identified clusters.
• The mission will entail a subsidy of Rs 550 crore in the initial two years for 50 clusters and every cluster will employ 400 to 2000 artisans.
• The mission will generate employment in rural areas and will contribute to the green economy.
• It also aims at linking five crore women across the country to the initiative.
• The mission is expected to create one lakh jobs during the first two years.
• President Kovind also launched the ‘Sampark portal’, a digital platform to connect five lakh job seekers with recruiters.
• This digital platform will be useful in creating a skill pool of workers and connecting trained youth with job opportunities.
Indian Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises Sector
• The Indian MSME sector provides maximum opportunities for both self-employment and wage-employment outside the agricultural sector.
• The sector generates around 100 million jobs through over 46 million units situated throughout the geographical expanse of the country.
• Besides the wide range of services provided by the sector, the sector is engaged in the manufacturing of over 6,000 products ranging from traditional to hi-tech items.
• Currently, MSME sector leverages demographic dividend of the country and promotes inclusive growth in rural and backward areas. The sector accounted for around 60 percent employment in India.
• There are about 6.5 crore MSMEs in India which have created over 11 crore job opportunities.
• Such enterprises have registered over 10 percent growth in recent times which is much more compared to large enterprises.
• At Present, the Ministry of MSME is working to set up 15 new modern technology centres all over the country including in the Northeast. Each centre is being built at a cost of around Rs 150 crore.