Destiny always rewards persistent efforts. After nearly two decades of serving KASSIA in various capacities, I am happy to take charge as its President with the best wishes of my fellow Office Bearers, Outgoing Office Bearers, Past Presidents, Council Members and Members. I am confident that we will come up to the expectations of our Members and bring cheer to the micro and small scale industries of our State as my team is a fine blend of expertise and experience.
We have among us, veteran entrepreneurs who have seen the best of times and the worst of times and so I feel we can come up with appropriate solutions and work with the Government both at the State and the Centre to bring them to reality.
Our number one priority will be the commissioning of our Flagship KASSIA Centre of Excellence & Innovation coming up at Dabaspet. Our vision is to ensure that the Centre will be a vehicle for promoting the products of micro and small scale enterprises in particular, apart from being a major addition to the industrial infrastructure in Karnataka for MSMEs.
On the policy front, the much-awaited State Budget 2023-24 presented by Hon’ble Chief Minister, Sri Siddaramaiah was a perfect exercise in balancing the expectations of different stakeholders. While it has been largely described as a budget with a welfare bias, there is much to commend it from the point of view of the small industry too – which I believe was a response to our concerns expressed to the Chief Minister and for which I am grateful to the incoming Government.
The Budget has announced subsidies on loan taken under self-employment scheme, training for skill development and collateral guarantee on loans provided by the government for prescribed entrepreneurs, apart from free electricity to weavers having up to 10 HP electric connections up to 250 units. KASSIA suggested for setting up industrial estates at district level as lack of industrial sheds is one of the most burning issues faced by existing and prospective entrepreneurs and the Budget proposes to set up industrial estates and townships in many places like KGF, Vijayapura and Dakshina Kannada. KASSIA also looks forward the proposal of setting up a common facility centre to MSMEs and most important of all, establishing a single portal for industries to apply and obtain all licenses/permissions needed.
Of course, it is also true that there may be some legitimate scepticism among the industry fraternity about the single portal for approvals and licenses, given anecdotal experience in the past, but it will be our endeavour to ensure that the budgeted proposals are taken to their finality without any let up in the implementation.
A major concern expressed by many Member-units and the industry at large is about the lack of proper implementation of government schemes on the ground. We will also be working on this with the Government and other stakeholders, for the best intentions are of no use if they are not taken forward to their logical conclusion.
Friends, I would like to once again thank all of you for reposing trust in us and I would like to reiterate that we will do everything in our hands to match your expectations.
CA SHASHIDHARA SHETTY