To provide shopping complex and mall experience in rural areas, Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) is planning to open ‘rural market complex’ at Sohiong village in the East Khasi Hills district of Meghalaya. Later, this project may be replicated in other regions too.
A delegation from East Khasi Hills led by two young journalists, Khrawhoklang Thabah and Rining Lyngdoh Mawphlang met Dr. Jitendra Singh, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge), DoNER, and submitted a proposal-cum-project report for construction of a rural market complex at Sohiong village.
Appreciating the effort undertaken in preparing the project report, Dr. Singh said, rural market complex is a new concept which could actually be applicable even in other parts of the country with similar topography and hilly terrain. For example, in the State of Jammu & Kashmir several remote rural areas in peripheral districts like Kishtwar and Doda could be benefited by such projects, the minister said.
The proposal submitted to the minister provides a detailed outline of the project envisaged to be brought up on a 10 acre land in Hima Sohiong at a cost of Rs. 10 crores.
Dr. Singh assured the deputation that he will ask the officers in his Ministry to further develop the project report, and, if need be, seek professional help for its further modification and improvement. An on-the-spot assessment of the proposed venue will also have to be undertaken, he added.
If the initiative proves successful, it could open a new chapter in providing comprehensive shopping complexes or malls in village areas, which would not only serve the local needs, but could, to a significant extent, also bring down the trend of migration of youth and other people from rural to urban areas.