Rural economy of Rangpur district is boosting as the small and medium scale entrepreneurs have set up 5,360 power-run cottage and small-scale industries and enterprises taking the advantage of rural electrification.
“The power-run enterprises are thriving fast creating jobs to cut poverty and improve life standard of the rural people,” said Superintending Engineer (Current Charge) at Rangpur Zonal Office of Rural Electrification Board (REB) Md Ramjan Ali.
Two Palli Bidyut Samity (PBS) authorities have so far given around 580,000 residential, industrial and other connections, including 5,360 connections to cottage and small and medium scale industries and enterprises in the region.
“The PBS-1 and PBS-2 have brought three upazilas under total electricity coverage and are working to bring other five upazilas under full electricity coverage here by September next,” Ali added.
Talking to a reporter, Anwarul Islam, 55, of village Chandanpat Matiyapara under Sadar upazila said he led poor life with his wife Sheuly Begum, 43, and son Shishir, 5, for years together.
“But, my life started changing since I set up a welding workshop ‘Shishir Traders’ at nearby Chandanpat Bazar and started welding works using electricity two years ago,” he said.
Anwarul now earns Tk 20,000 to 25,000 a month after paying monthly electricity bills ranging between Tk 1,500 and 2,000.
Youth Shudha Ranjan, 30, of village Matiyapara said he started running a small welding workshop as well at Chandanpat Bazar five years back using electricity there.
“Now, I earn over Tk 20,000 a month to meet all demands of my family comprising of my mother Bano Bala and elder brother Nirmal Chandra,” said solvent Ranjan adding that he would marry soon.
Motiar Rahman of village Sreerampur said he runs a husking mill using electricity and crushes paddy at Chandanpat Bazar earning Tk 25,000 monthly after meeting all expenses.
Kajol Barman, 25, of village Gopinathpur under Sadar upazila said he worked at a tailoring shop in Rangpur city for six years.
It was tough for Kajol to manage his family comprising of his father Dilip Chandra, mother Maya Rani, brothers Koilash Chandra, 20, and Polash, 17, wife Joyoshree Rani, 20, with his small income.
“Taking the facility of electricity supply, I set up a tailoring shop “Noya Selai Ghar” at Chalk Yusufpur Bazar near my village five years back,” Kajol said.
Now, Kajol works at his shop day and night with his employee Mostafiz and earns Tk 15,000 to 20,000 every month after meeting all expenses.
Emdadul Haque, 45, of village Khaluapara in Sadar upazila was unemployed to lead miserable life with his wife and three children ten years back.
“Taking loan under ‘Ekti Bari, Ekti Khamar’ project, I set up a small enterprise at nearby Paglapeer Bazar in 2010 to recharge batteries for auto rickshaws using electricity,” Emdadul said.
Emdadul has expanded his enterprise now, employed three, constructed a semi-concrete house and owns five cows to lead an affluent life, reports BSS.
Divisional Commissioner Kazi Hassan Ahmed said rural electrification is helping to flourish cottage, small and medium scale enterprises making rural economy stronger and further improving economic vulnerability index and life standard of the people.
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