NITI Aayog Launches ‘Vocal for Local' Initiative Fostering Grassroots Entrepreneurship

Bharat Mahan

In a move towards bolstering local economies and fostering grassroots entrepreneurship, NITI Aayog launched the 'Vocal for Local' initiative under its Aspirational Blocks Programme on 13th March, 2024 in the presence of Shri BVR Subrahmanyam, CEO, NITI Aayog and other dignitaries from various states and blocks. This initiative aims to encourage a spirit of self-reliance among the populace of Aspirational Blocks, propelling them towards sustainable growth and prosperity.

The logo for ‘Aakanksha’ was also unveiled under the ‘Vocal for Local’ initiative by Prof. Ramesh Chand, Member, NITI Aayog in presence of Shri. B.V.R. Subrahmanyam, CEO, NITI Aayog. As a part of this initiative, indigenous local products from 500 Aspirational Blocks have been mapped and consolidated under Aakanksha. The launch was attended by all 329 Districts and Block Level Officials under Aspirational Blocks Programme who connected virtually for the event.

Shri BVR Subrahmanyam, CEO, NITI Aayog, in his keynote address urged the District Collectors and the Block Level Officials to collaborate with partners like Government e-Marketplace (GeM), and Open Network for Digital Commerce (ONDC) to facilitate sustainable growth of micro enterprises in Aspirational Blocks. He emphasized that Akansha is an umbrella brand which could be supplemented into multiple sub-brands that have a potential to create an international market.

In order to encourage these products, a dedicated window for Aspirational Blocks Programme under the brand name ‘Aakanksha’ on GeM portal has been established. The partners will also provide technical and operational support for the facilitation of e-commerce onboarding, establishing linkages, financial/digital literacy, documentation/certification and skill enhancement among others. This comprehensive capacity-building approach is expected to significantly strengthen the Vocal for Local initiative, thereby ensuring sustainability.

By nurturing a conducive ecosystem for local businesses to flourish, the 'Vocal for Local' initiative is poised to usher in a new era of economic empowerment and self-sufficiency. Through sustained efforts and collective action, NITI Aayog remains committed to realising the full potential of every Aspirational Block, driving inclusive growth and prosperity for all.

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