New Delhi: The Union government on Friday launched ‘SonChiraiya’, an initiative for the marketing of urban Self-Help Group (SHG) products.

While launching the brand and logo, Secretary of Housing and urban affairs ministry, Durga Shanker Mishra, said that one of the priority areas of the government includes helping women to become financially empowered and live a dignified life.

Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Antyodaya Yojana (DAY-NULM), which comes under the purview of MoHUA, has been focusing on equipping the urban poor women with adequate skills and opportunities to enable them to promote sustainable micro-enterprises.

The programme helps women from urban poor households get into self-help groups and their federations, to create a support system for them.

“Over 5.7 lakh SHGs have been formed across various States/ UTs with almost 60 lakh members. Many of these SHGs are engaged in livelihood activities, producing goods such as handicrafts, textiles, toys, eatables and so on,” the Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs informed in a statement.

It further revealed that the produced products were being sold primarily in local neighbourhood markets as there were barriers in achieving visibility and wide market access.

To overcome these challenges, MoHUA has entered into a Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) with e-Commerce giants Amazon and Flipkart, with the purpose of women empowerment.

“Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, this partnership has successfully onboarded on the e-Commerce Portal over 2,000 products of nearly 5,000 SHG members across 25 States/ UTs,” the ministry stated.

“Innovative methods of online trainings for SHGs have been ensured to enable them to smoothly operate on e-portals. Live demonstrations for account registration, pricing, packaging, re-branding and so on were also organised in collaboration with the e-portals and State Urban Livelihoods Missions,” it added.

This initiative is a step towards ensuring increased visibility and global access for the products made by women. The Ministry has revealed that it expects to link many more such SHG members, “with a variety of professionally packaged, hand-crafted ethnic products, reaching the doorsteps of the customers globally”.

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