NEW DELHI: India is a country rich in culture and heritage. It’s full of festivities, varied landscapes and beautiful people. The Indian festivals have been an integral part of our lives from time immemorial when they were celebrated for various reasons, such as celebrating the harvest season or honoring one’s ancestors. And now, with India becoming a growing market for SMEs (small-to-medium enterprises), these celebrations are giving them opportunities to create jobs and earn more revenue too.
Festivals are boon to SMEs
It is observed during major festivals like Diwali, Navratri, Eid, etc, there is a significant rise in demand for various products like idols, decorations, jewelry items, home artifacts, among other items, which leads to increased production by SME players. Traditional women’s garments are now being replaced with high-end fashion wear at the time of festivals. Artists are being employed by these players to design them according to the changing trend.
Diwali, which is one of the most popular Indian festivals celebrated during October or November every year, provides employment to about 4 million people who work in the industry. Apart from this, there are jobs like making lotus lamps that require intricate handwork skills which can be done by only trained artisans.
Likewise, many families buy new clothes for their children on religious occasions like Eid-ul-Fitr or Diwali, which will require tailoring services from small businesses that would otherwise be unemployed at this time of year due to lack of demand for their services.
“Make in India” Initiative
On the other hand, SME players involved in the printing sector are also accepting jobs to print banners, hoardings and other promotional materials for various events. Furthermore, to help SMEs grow, the Indian government introduced the “Make in India” program — an initiative aimed at promoting entrepreneurship through easier regulation compliance for new businesses, a reduction in red tape, and better tax benefits.
This has helped boost employment opportunities for young Indians as more entrepreneurs are willing to take up riskier ventures without fear of being penalized. Moreover, leading e-commerce platforms like Amazon and Flipkart have started various initiatives to support local businesses and karigars (craftsmen) during festivals, urging customers to buy local.
Businesses in India, particularly small businesses, have faced significant obstacles in the year 2020 due to the unprecedented outbreak of Covid-19. Small businesses are critical to our society’s economic and social fabric, and we all play a part in their survival.
So, this festive season, let us all support them and nurture them by making a choice of buying local goods and items. Go vocal for local.
(Kaveri Sachdev, CEO, My Pooja Box)