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Day -2 : 24th CII Enterprise Odisha 2024 Ignites Discussions on Agriculture, Women Empowerment, Startups

Jharsuguda : The 24th CII Enterprise Odisha 2024 entered its second day at the Exhibition Ground, Jharsuguda, on January 20, 2024, with an insightful discourse on propelling the prosperity of Odisha. The discussions centered around leveraging the state’s vast potential across different sectors to foster economic growth. Distinguished speakers included Principal Secretary Industries Hemant Sharma, IPICOL and IDCO MD Bhupendra Singh Punia, and various District Collectors.

During the session addressing “Opportunities in Agriculture and Food Processing,” esteemed speakers shed light on the expansive potential available to both farmers and Agri-entrepreneurs. Remarkably, among all the state departments, the water resources department has demonstrated the highest level of investment, directly benefiting farmers.

The speakers passionately urged farmers to seize this opportune moment, emphasizing the cultivation of diverse and profitable crops. Encouraging a strategic approach, they advocated for the establishment of small-scale industries to elevate income levels. In addition, the implementation of nano urea was underscored as a pivotal aspect of modern agricultural practices.

Simultaneously, the focus extended to agri-entrepreneurs, guiding them on effective strategies for transporting harvested agricultural products to the market. Emphasis was placed on value addition through processing, fostering a sustainable and lucrative agri-business ecosystem.

Distinguished personalities who graced this enlightening session included Bhupendra Singh Punia, the Managing Director of Epical and IDCO; Dr. Parth R. Das Gupta, Advisor Emeritus at the Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture; Varsha Jha, Vice President at Abis Export; P. Anwesha Reddy, District Collector of Kalahandi; and Dr. Pradeep Mohanty, Vice President of the CII Odisha State Council. Their collective wealth of expertise significantly enriched the discourse, providing invaluable insights for the progression of the agriculture and food processing sectors in Odisha.

Shifting the focus to skill development, the subsequent session delved into the enhancement of human resource development by fostering collaboration between industry and academia. Companies such as Tata Motors, Hero MotoCorp, Ashok Leyland, Tata Steel, and Hindalco are actively engaged in collaborative efforts to cultivate skilled manpower for various industries across the state. The curriculum not only imparts technical skills but also emphasizes life skills crucial for holistic professional development.

A pivotal aspect highlighted during the discussion was the emphasis on cultivating higher-skilled human resources through initiatives like the World Skills Centre in Bhubaneswar. The speakers articulated that this approach would not only meet the staffing needs of industries establishing themselves in the state but also position them competitively in the market.

Esteemed speakers in this session included Principal Secretary Industries Hemant Kumar Sharma, Indranil Roy, Director of ThyssenKrupp Industries, Nirmal Singh, Founder & CEO of Wheebox, Mohamed Badran from GIZ India & Ameya Vanjari, Chief Operating Officer of Tata Strive. Their collective insights and perspectives significantly enriched the discourse, addressing the crucial link between skill development and the future of industries in Odisha.

In the special session dedicated to Mission Shakti and Women Empowerment, speakers emphasized the imperative for the social, economic, and political upliftment of women for the betterment of both the country and the state. To further empower women’s self-help groups (SHGs), discussions revolved around the establishment of industrial parks in all districts, mirroring the successful model of food parks. The emphasis was on creating a conducive environment and opportunities for women across all spheres to achieve success and empowerment.

The speakers enthusiastically encouraged Self-Help Groups (SHGs) to capitalize on the abundant opportunities within the food processing industry. Keynote speakers, including Ms. Nilanjana Mukherjee, CEO at Kalinga Hospitals Ltd; Ms. Monalisa Panda, Chairperson, CII Indian Women Network, Odisha; Prof. Sasmita Samanta, the Founder of SOUL; L. Sangeeta Kujur, Assistant General Manager at Union Bank of India & Rowan Ainsworth, Consul General at the Australian Consulate-General shared invaluable insights. The session was further enriched by the firsthand experiences of individuals such as Prema Das from Divyajyoti SHG, Sumita Barika representing Mayurbhanj, and Kolabari Chand from Jharsuguda Maa Sambalpuri SHG, providing practical perspectives.

In the session dedicated to startups, speakers underscored the significance of two critical factors for entrepreneurial success. They emphasized the need for profound respect for entrepreneurs and traders, while also highlighting the essential role of grooming in the business environment. The discussion pointed out that requisite changes at both the government and societal levels are imperative to foster a conducive environment for startups. Notably, individuals from non-entrepreneurial backgrounds are increasingly venturing into enterprise development, signaling a positive shift. The speakers stressed the importance of involving entrepreneurial families in the business sector.

Acknowledging these dynamics, the government demonstrated its commitment to facilitating change. Authorities pledged to periodically amend rules and regulations to propel Odisha to the forefront of the startup landscape. Key figures present in this insightful session included Principal Secretary Industries Hemant Sharma, Startup Odisha Executive Chairman Dr. Omkar Rai, IIM Sambalpur Director Mahadeo Jaiswal, Vishal Kumar Agarwalla from Yi India, former Chairman of Yi Bhubaneswar Abanis Nayak, PwC Partner Ashutosh Chand, Chair at CII Young Indians, Bhubaneswar, Sonal N More and Jharsuguda SP Parmer Smit Parshottam Das. Their collective presence and contributions further solidified the commitment to fostering a vibrant startup ecosystem in Odisha.


We are a group of professionals providing all-around information of Jharsuguda District.

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