It’s only dreams that make way to becoming entrepreneurs
Dhaka, June 5, 2022 (BSS) - Mahfiza Mina, daughter of Abdul Majid, a resident of Bongram village under Poba Upazila in Pabna district, completed her MA in Political Science from Rajshahi University. Upon completion of her study, she joined as an assistant teacher at a primary school.
With the passage of time, she got married to an engineer. The couple is blessed with two siblings.
The life of Mina went smooth with her professional and personal life as well. But there was an empty feeling in her as she from her childhood had a dream to become an entrepreneur.
Apart from her job, she started a dairy farm with two cows in 2010 and now she is the owner of 50 cows. Apart from cows, she also rears sheep and goats.
She has already received the “Icon of Women Entrepreneur Award’ for her outstanding contribution toward the empowerment of womenfolk.
Lutfa Sanzida started her business with an investment of Tk 15,000. Once she used to supply kids' wear and Panjabi to the local market. Registering her enthusiasm in entrepreneurship, one of her relatives helped her to expand her trading.
Taking Tk 30,000 loan from the relative, she opened a showroom at a local market. Since then she has been floating her business. Now, she is the owner of ‘Anindo Boutique House and Anindo Beauty parlour.
Her flamboyant life has been illustrated in the textbook of Class IX and X.
Nurunnahar Begum, a resident of Iswardi Upazila in Pabna district, has already received agriculture awards. She won a bronze medal in the Bangabandhu National Agriculture Award in 2011, she received Radhuni Kirtimoni Award in 2017, and she also pocketed KIB Award in 2018.
In 2010, she received the City Group National Award for encouraging local women in cultivating vegetables and fruits. She received prize money of 3 lakh, a certificate and a television.
Currently, she is serving as the president of Joy Bangla Women Development Cooperative Society. Apart from, architecting her own fate, she has helped over 1,000 women to become self-reliant.
Many women similar to Nurunnahar have become self-reliant taking training, loan and various facilities from the government led by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
Of the total entrepreneurs in the country, about 31.61 per cent are women. Bangladesh is in a higher position in terms of making women entrepreneurs, according to statistics.
Despite having different obstacles, women with their firm ambition have become entrepreneurs and they are successfully running their businesses.
The advancement of women is not city-centric as thousands of women entrepreneurs in the rural areas have also established their businesses with support provided by the government.
State Minister for Women and Children Affairs Meher Afroz Chumki said no nation can go ahead without ensuring equal rights for men and men.
“Without financial establishment, women cannot ensure their integrated position in the society,” the state minister said.
“About 40 lakh women are keeping garment sector functioning…they are not owners of garment factories….When they would be able to become owners of these factories, the economy of the country will go far ahead”, she added.
Sources said different banks and financial organisations have provided Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) loans amounting Tk 5,346 crore among women entrepreneurs.
A total of 13,742 women entrepreneurs have been created through these loans as the Awami League government is determined to achieve gender equality and ensure equal rights for women.
Awami League manifesto of the last general election held on December 30, 2018, pledged to eradicate all kinds of repression against women and ensure gender equity in the society Bangladesh has been a role model in women’s empowerment in the past decade, and the country is experiencing an appreciable change in society because of its efforts.
According to statistics, the number of working women increased to 18.6 million in 2016-17 from 16.2 million in 2010. Bangladesh secured the 47th position among 144 countries in 2017 as per The Global Gender Gap Report, whereas India, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan and Pakistan remain at 108, 109, 111, 124 and 143 positions respectively.
Meher Afroz Chumki said, “Women are very talented and sincere towards their jobs…but they cannot go ahead due to various challenges….If a man can do business of crore money, a woman will also be able to do the same volume of business.”
Governor of Bangladesh Bank Fazle Kabir told BSS that it is crucial to generate entrepreneurs rather than providing jobs as an entrepreneur can provide jobs among many people which would help reduce the unemployment crisis.
Regarding creating women entrepreneurs in the country, he said the central bank has given directives to each bank to provide loans to at least three women so that they can make themselves entrepreneurs.