Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Creating opportunities

Sk Abdus Samad of Bankura district has become a role model for those who are not afraid of hardships and dare to dream big
Sk Abdus Samad could not study beyond middle school because he could not afford it. Son of a poor school teacher at Rasulpur in Bankura district of West Bengal, Samad started managing a small grocery shop set up by his father to feed his family members.
While in business, he was advised to join Entrepreneurship Development Course for six weeks in 2002, organised by NABARD at Somsar, Bankura.
After the training, Samad realised that growth in Rasulpur and its surroundings offered a good demand for different varieties of paddy, potato and oil seeds. After market survey, he decided to start a unit to make jute bags. He later submitted a business plan of setting up a seed manufacturing farm and the bank sanctioned him a loan of Rs 10 lakh.
Now, 35-year-old Samad owns two seed farms - Kaveri Seeds and Kalyani Seed Farm - having an annual turnover of nearly Rs10 crore. More than 200 families are directly or indirectly benefited from his enterprise.
Addressing a national seminar on Skill Development organised by American India Foundation and National Skill Development Corporation in August, former President Dr AP J Abdul Kalam had referred to rags to riches story of Samad.
“This case highlights two unique aspects which be critical for development of all sections of society— first, we need to create job generators like Samad who could generate multiple employment opportunities for the deprived and second, entrepreneurship incubation institutions need to be developed all over India and developing world,” Dr Kalam had said at the seminar.
“I was never interested in taking up a job. I wanted to set something of my own,” says Samad who employs about 260 workers. He has plans to promote his business in neighbouring states like Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh and Orissa and also in the neighboring country Nepal.
He has also plans to set up B Ed college and Primary Teachers Training Institute to help rural people of Bankura. Moreover, locals also see him as someone who holds blood donation camps, marriages for poor girls in the locality besides several other social works.

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