By Dr. Sofi Rafiq
Fostering Entrepreneurship in Jammu and Kashmir.
The concept and role of entrepreneurship in the economic development of a region was discussed in the previous write up. In this write up the focus is to discuss entrepreneurship vis-a-vis Jammu and Kashmir. The economy of Jammu and Kashmir posses almost all the characteristics of an underdeveloped economy besides its diversified geographic, agro-climatic and topographic features poses unique problems of economic development. Closed corner location, remoteness and isolation from major markets, scattered population, lack of infrastructure, Industrial backwardness and above all the disruption in normal civic life during last three decades- all these factors and characteristics pose peculiar challenges on development front therefore, demand special outlook to address developmental issues of Jammu and Kashmir. Moreover, the small size of domestic market is the limiting factor for private sector to flourish in the Union Territory but we need to realise one thing that:
“Khuda Ne Aaj Tak us qaum ki halat nahi badli
Na ho jisko khayal aap aapni halaat ke badalne ka.
So Despite all odds we as citizens of this land in general and educated youth in particular have to think and act very seriously and need to shoulder the responsibility to work for the economic development of this region especially when special status of the region was revoked and has become a history now. Entrepreneurship is one such tool that can be adopted to work in such direction as Entrepreneurship plays a decisive role in the economic development of any region thus a region needs to create and nourish entrepreneurial culture to prosper which we unquestionably lack. A region may be inherited with plenty of natural resources, but its economic development is a farfetched dream in the absence of efficient entrepreneurs because it is only active and enthusiastic entrepreneurs who fully explore the potentialities of the available resources land, technology, capital, material, Human Resource etc. The Question is why we lack entrepreneurship culture? That needs to be addressed as soon as possible, before finding answer to this question let me quote Robert L. Garner who has observed that “Development is a state of mind. People have to develop themselves before they can change their physical environment. Habits, thoughts and conduct are the most stubborn obstacles to development”. Progress in economic development does not happen accidently or haphazardly. The economic renaissance of an area depends on a regions ability to address critical needs. Therefore, a pool of capable people need to hold the responsibility for economic development and must establish programmes for investment in their community. Now coming back to the question why we lack Entrepreneurship Culture? An attempt has been made in the following lines to answer this question
Obstacles Inhibiting Entrepreneurship
There are a variety of obstacles which inhibit the entrepreneurs and make environment uncertain for them. N.H. Left has put it as follows: “Absence of Entrepreneurship in least developed regions is generally attributed to the alleged socio-cultural rigidities”. According to a survey done by Accenture (A Multinational Professional Service Company) on entrepreneurship which spanned 18 months and 22 countries, including India reveals that The United States is perceived to be the most entrepreneurial country and India is seen as the most enterprise unfriendly nation. Access to capital, the right regulatory and tax environment, and positive social and cultural attitudes towards entrepreneurship are the basic aspects that must be in place for an entrepreneurial climate to evolve and flourish besides all this curbing bureaucratic problems is inevitable. Accordingly for me among other reasons the most inevitable reason for lack of entrepreneurship culture in Jammu and Kashmir is the lack of positive social and cultural attitude toward entrepreneurship, that needs to be changed for betterment, another related question that needs an answer is why Entrepreneur culture do not flourish in certain areas? To be more precise we need to understand what makes an Entrepreneur? There are some environs which are feasible and supportive to help in making entrepreneurs.
What makes an entrepreneur?
What makes an entrepreneur is the combination of various factors that play a dominant role in the formation of the personality suitable for making a future entrepreneur some factors are discussed in succeeding lines:
1.Special and unique Personality: Basically entrepreneur is a special/ different type of personality shaped right from early childhood by the combination of various factors which motivates an individual towards becoming an independent businessman/ entrepreneur. The personality of the entrepreneurship is carved in such a way that he loves to take risk and have guts to rebel against the traditional path of success. They go against the tide and emerge as victorious by finding opportunities for success outside the established institutions.
2.Family Ground: The family back ground also plays a decisive role in building up of the personality necessary for turning into an entrepreneur later in life. The families where security and non risk bearing activities are encouraged right from childhood, the individual likes to be more security oriented rather than making an attempt and trying his luck in those activities which involves adventurism and uncertainty. Similarly, the families where deep attachments and emotional relationships are encouraged, the child growing under such situations will never help person to develop a deep urge to be independent and create a framework required for enjoying autonomy despite the fact that such children have achieved academic excellence.
3.Physical Environment: The environment surrounding us in which we grow has a definite impact on our thought process and the type of personality we will be. Entrepreneurs are the men/ women who are grown in a different set of environment in their family, school, and other social institutions. They love to dive into crisis but come out as winners.
4.Economic deprivation and Independence: Sometimes Economic deprivation also works as a motivational factor towards creating something on their own and free oneself from the clutches of oppressing forces which attempt to kill the spirit of individualism.
5.Unique Approach: Entrepreneurs adopt a different approach towards success and are unique in their own ways. They find more satisfaction in their creative faculties, getting an opportunity to express them fully satisfied rather than submitting themselves to forces which are already structured and rigid. They believe in doing something new and in a better way. They are determined to come out of oppressing forces remember academic excellence is not the prerequisite for becoming an entrepreneur of success and repute.
Thus shaping a personality fit for the entrepreneurship is not only due to isolated incidences in life of an individual but it has been as a result of learned response to their total Social, emotional, political, religious and economic environment. So as a community we have to try our level best to workout strategies and bring necessary changes to our social and cultural factors and make them favourable for shaping special Personalities required for nourishing the entrepreneur culture.
Over above all in the underdeveloped regions like Jammu and Kashmir, according to McClelland’s concept of personality aspect of entrepreneurship, some people with high achievement motivation come forward to behave in an entrepreneurial way to change the stationary inertia, as they would not be satisfied with the present status that they have in the society. They come to the rescue and lead from the front behave like role models whom others follow this is the point where we need to come forward.
to be contd……
The author can be reached at [email protected]