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Economic empowerment programme for women launched at Tikrikilla
TURA: The Empowerment and Income Generating Programme for Women of Muktidata Tribal Welfare Society Aitibi of Tikrikilla was launched on Thursday with the inauguration of three units by Raksamgre MLA Lemison D Sangma.
The income generating units that were inaugurated were Abisa tailoring and embroidery unit, Marian Rosary making unit and Ama washing powder unit.
The programme which is in its second phase is being supported by the Catholic Church to help uplift the poor people of the area and save the tribal farmers from exploitation by middlemen in the trade and business ventures.
The 1st phase launched in April, last year, led to the setting up of a fair price shop under Muktidata Multipurpose Cooperative Society. The shop has helped the people of the area get quality goods at a cheaper rate.
Chief Guest Limison D Sangma in his inaugural address at the launch of the three units urged upon the people to cooperate with such ventures so as to help them earn extra income for their families.
He strongly felt that Women and men of the area need more awareness to prevent being exploited by the middle men. While appreciating the initiative taken by the church to empower women, Lemison Sangma said that such kind of small scale industries always benefit the people of area.
Recalling how the innocent farmers used to be exploited, Rev. Fr Benoy Joseph spoke about the mortgage of their gardens and arecanut plantations to middlemen who reaped the profits for years altogether. He urged upon the farmers to desist from giving away their prime land for mortgage.
“It is very sad that people who are getting 120 bags of Arecanut from their plantations in just one season gives the land away as mortgage for eight long years for just a sum of Rs. 7 lakhs. The middleman who takes away the same produce makes a profit of close to five lakh rupees in one season alone and by the time the eight year is over he has made a huge profit of Rs. 30-40 Lakhs while the farmer gains nothing. The ignorance of the people is being exploited by these middlemen,” said Fr Joseph.
The programme is expected to help give employment to over 800 women and school dropout girls by the time the third phase is launched.
The third phase which is soon to begin will provide training and support for women in the making of candles, phynoil, harpit, Lysol, hair shampoo and umbrella making.
The CDPO of Tikrikilla, Pancha Baida, while participating in the inaugural programme said that the church sponsored programme may help many people to become economically stable in the region.
“The women of the area can earn additional income to educate their children or use the money saved from this small scale industries during times of need specially when a family member is sick and needs medical attention,” said Baida.
Joint secretary of Muktidata Tribal Welfare society, Sandesh Bhakshaka, also said that such kind of awareness programmes will go a long way in creating awareness on improvement of one’s economic life.