June , 2024
BYST and DICCI Sign MoU to Support and Educate 5000 SC/ST Entrepreneurs
19:26 pm

Ankit Singh

The non-profit Bharatiya Yuva Shakti Trust (BYST) and India’s largest Dalit industry body, the Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DICCI), have signed an agreement to provide credit support, training, and mentorship to Dalit-led small and medium enterprises. This groundbreaking partnership, signed on April 26th in Delhi, aims to create 5000 Dalit entrepreneurs, 20% of whom will be women, to become employment generators.

Through this partnership, BYST and DICCI will provide mentorship to 1000 Dalit young entrepreneurs. These youth will receive guidance and knowledge on entrepreneurship, customer relations, project preparation, sales skills, and more.

The free training program, Entrepreneur Online Learning (EOL), will last for 2-3 days, enabling participants to fine-tune and convert their ideas into concrete business plans. BYST and DICCI will also extend credit linkages and mentoring support to 250 Dalit youth, with an average loan size of 4 lakhs per individual, facilitating the easy establishment and running of businesses. Access to credit will be provided through BYST’s extensive network of institutional lending partners, including Bank of Baroda (BOB), Indian Overseas Bank (IOB), Indian Bank, IDBI, State Bank of India, and Central Bank of India.

High-flying Dalit entrepreneur members of DICCI will receive training and support under the Sustaining Entrepreneurship & Green Business Program, which provides a basic understanding of Environmental, Social, Gender, and Governance (ESG) aspects and their integration into business practices. These entrepreneurs have a minimum turnover of 10-20 lakhs and generate at least 8-10 direct jobs.

BYST assists disadvantaged youth in developing business ideas into viable enterprises under the guidance of mentors, fostering a transition from job seekers to job creators. To date, BYST has mentored rural entrepreneurs, generating 320,000 employment opportunities (direct and indirect) across the country. DICCI is a national industry chamber focused on developing entrepreneurship among SC/ST people, coordinating financial assistance and support for their development.

Commenting on the collaboration, Lakshmi Venkataraman Venkatesan, Founding and Managing Trustee of Bharatiya Yuva Shakti Trust, said, “The Dalit community still faces challenges due to discrimination, hindering their pursuit of high-paying jobs and business opportunities. Barriers like limited access to capital, resources, and mentoring support persist, hindering their success. Caste-based discrimination is evident in banking and corporate settings, making equitable access to opportunities even more important. Eradicating caste biases is crucial for nurturing an inclusive economy.” She added, “When I heard Dr. Ambedkar’s quote from my father, Honorable former President Mr. R. Venkataraman, ‘If you believe in living a respectable life, you believe in self-help which is the best help,’ it resonated deeply with me. By incorporating affirmative action in higher education institutions, Dr. Ambedkar ensured that generations of Dalit youth would be able to compete on a more equal footing. This partnership strengthens our commitment to empower Dalit entrepreneurship in India.”

DICCI Founder Chairman Padmashri Dr. Milind Kamble said, “DICCI is working towards the vision of Developed India @2047, focusing on the empowerment of SC/ST entrepreneurs in social, educational, and economic aspects. To build and sustain competitive manufacturing enterprises, both large and small, and realize the vision of ‘Make in India’ for the world, Dalit entrepreneurs need to be supported and empowered. This partnership with BYST will accelerate economic growth and the potential of SC entrepreneurship for sustainable inclusive development.” Padmashri Ravi Narra, President of DICCI, expressed his enthusiasm, saying, “DICCI has established Business Facilitation Centers (BFCs) in five locations (Pune, Delhi, Hyderabad, Chennai, Mumbai, Bhopal, Jaipur), to identify aspiring and existing SC/ST entrepreneurs and integrate them into a professional entrepreneurial ecosystem. This partnership with BYST will provide support every step of the way, helping to realize the dreams of SC/ST entrepreneurs.”

BYST will also provide mentor training and development for DICCI officials and faculty, including assessment, practical training, webinars, networking, and certification. 

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