By Zareef Muzammil
KLANG, July 4 — A special unit handles all Indian community entrepreneurship programmes in the state under the Menteri Besar’s office.
Menteri Besar Dato’ Seri Amirudin Shari said a combination of existing initiatives with several improvements has been implemented to strengthen the socio-economy of the community, especially among low-income families (B40).
“I believe that in Selangor, there will be an institution such as the Malaysian Chamber of Commerce (DPM) which brings together many entrepreneurs. They (DPM) will train entrepreneurs from the youth and university levels.
“We will do our best. Not only by providing business equipment assistance or funds alone but also in guiding them because entrepreneurship is also about having the right attitude, mindset and tactics to progress in business,” he said.
He said this at the Shaping a Malaysian Indian Development Narrative programme at the Wyndham Acmar Hotel here, last night.
The programme gathered 96 participants from 63 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and was also attended by Klang member of parliament Charles Santiago, Seremban MP Anthony Loke Siew Fook as well as Sentosa state assemblyman Dr G Gunaraj.
In the meantime, Amirudin said giving food baskets was no longer the best solution to help poor Indians escape poverty.
“I believe having a stable source of income is a big issue that often plagues the Indian community. They can no longer be provided with food baskets because they also care about their dignity.
“Previously (we’ve seen) a feast lasting for seven days and seven nights held in plantation, but for me, this is not the solution, but (the solution is having) a good and comprehensive entrepreneurship programme for the Indian community,” he said.
The state government has implemented various programmes for the Indian community such as the Selangor Indian Entrepreneur Development (Sitham) which offers entrepreneur development training, skills and manufacturing courses, business guidance as well as business equipment assistance or grants.
Apart from that, Selangor allocated RM1.7 million in April last year for the Indian Selangor Empowerment and Entrepreneurs Development (I-Seed) programme, which provides equipment aid based on the type of business entrepreneurs operated.