Lately, India Government is fostering young entrepreneurs and startups by nurturing their innovations by providing various accessible support. The wave of Entrepreneurship and Startup has hit the nation. To empower the startups in the country, the Government of India also started a flagship initiative ‘Startup India’ to build a strong ecosystem that is conducive for the growth of startup, and to drive sustainable economic growth and generate employment opportunities in the country. Almost 22 states, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chattisgarh, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himalchal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerela, Madhya Pradesh. Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, Telangana, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal and Punjab have framed their StartUp Policies to emancipate the young entrepreneurs.
The Himalayan state ‘Sikkim’ did not remain untouched by the wave of Startups, thus the state has witnessed the rise of entrepreneurs and startups lately.Government of Sikkim giving nods to various schemes and programmes to support entrepreneurs is appreciated and welcomed but unless the state Sikkim owns a ‘StartUp Policy’, the effort still remains incomplete. Sikkim now needs Startup Policy!
To provide an impetus to the unemployed youth to develop new entrepreneurial ventures and self-employment opportunities in the state of Sikkim, the Government of Sikkim introduced a new credit linked promoter’s contribution financial assistance scheme called ‘Chief Minister’s Startup Scheme, (CMSS) vide notification No.1/C&1/2017-18 dated 22.09.2017 administered by its Department of Commerce and Industries.
For the state which has the second highest unemployment rate in the country after Tripura, the CMSS is assumed to be one of the promising schemes of the Sikkim Government to bring about the paradigm shift in the employment sector in the Himalayan state. The scheme provides 35% subsidy to the financially viable ventures of total investment of 20.00 Lakhs to individual of age group 40-45 years, which is considered as the result oriented scheme by the young entrepreneurs of Sikkim.
As per the offical sources, almost 4000 applicants have applied for the scheme and almost 900 or more has availed the scheme so far, the remaining are in the offical process for sanction. Government of Sikkim is putting up an effort to empower the youths of Sikkim and help them create a sustainable avenues for themselves yet the lack of well defined ‘Startup Policy’ in Sikkim someway sets back the CMSS to give good outcome for economic sustainability of entrepreneurs in the long run.
Asia Forbes 30 under 30 Honoree 2018 and Founder of NETaxi, Rewaj Chettri calls Chief Minister Startup Scheme as a good effort of the Sikkim Governemnt to fund the dreams and aspiration of young entrepreneurs who lack finances but the state Government has to frame the Startup Policy at the earliest and define startups. Government should create a viable ecosystem by working on policy level.
“The CMMS is a wonderful initiative in principle. The idea behind the same is appreciative. However it is important that guidelines is framed and a state level policy is required to ensure that an innovative idea like this gets further process driven. Also it is required that an allocation of budget, sector wise is devised so that the scheme does not become ‘single sector’ heavy scheme states Dewaker Basnet, Chief Learning Officer, 24hours Inspired.
“CMSS should have the flexibility to increase the loan amount for businesses that have unique ideas. StartUp Policy in Sikkim is a must. The idea is to embolden and be supportive of all the upcoming problem solvers. Entrepreneurs will play a significant role in building a bright future for Sikkim.Start Policy should give utmost priority to Ease of Doing Business, from certifications to licensing etc.” says Abhinandan Dhakal, Co-founder Shoten Group.
Each startup in Sikkim has it’s own challenges and each challenge should have a Governement policy to tackle. Different schemes and programmes under the Sikkim StartUp Policy shall give an unprecedented boost and growth in Sikkim youths coming up with new ideas, new innovations, and new startups.
Sikkim StartUp Policy should be a viable and well researched document which must address the issues and challenges of startups of all sectors. The important document shall it be counted by the experts and entrepreneurs if it meet up the issues, challenges of the young entrepreneurs of Sikkim. The policy should look into opening up single window system to meet up like innumerable registrations, certificates, finance, labor and environment-related compliances, and various other bureaucratic regulations.
Despite, Sikkim has witnessed mushrooming of various startups like Mitho – Food Delivery, Beautiful Earth, Olivet, NE Taxi, Shuffle Momos, Fidgety Fingers, Namchi Designer Candles, Shorten Group, The Accelerator, Taste Buds etc in short span yet the lack of StartUp Policy has limited our entrepreneurs and startups for well deserved growth.
‘Startup’ should be well defined so that the finanicial assistance is provided to right beneficiary or subsidy to only projects that comply or fit to startup definitions. Research, Development and Training must be provided to the recognized entrepreneurs and startups, Scheme for Marketing, Intellectual Property Protection Schemes, MSME UAM registration, Mentorship programmers, Access to registered venture capital and angel fund, setting up StartUp Council, Redressal system etc are few points that should be incorporated under the Sikkim StartUp Policy. With the StartUp policy be an action oriented document, the state also should come to the solution of it’s long debated Company’s Act to which the young entrepreneurs of Sikkim are sandwiched currently.
Sikkim is celebrating 44 years of statehood yet has been one of the progressive states of the country. Lately, Sikkim Government has been seen more serious towards tackling unemployment and job scarcity by promoting entrepreneurship thus the StartUp Policy framed at the earliest shall surely and efficiently support the Government and the startups to create a sustainable opportunities in no time.
StartUp Policy is the next milestone the Government of Sikkim needs to consider framing at the earliest with the consultation of the policy makers, experts, and the entrepreneurs of state. Finanicial support schemes initiated by the Sikkim Government is applaudable but to provide mileage to those valid schemes, the StartUp policy is crucial need of an hour.
Sikkim being one of the youngest states of the country has been doing good in terms of entrepreneurship but to create a viable and a sustainable growth of entrepreneurs the responsibilities now solely lies with the Government of Sikkim to facilitate the entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurship is a solution but for now entrepreneurs in Sikkim seeks for solutions to many standing problems.