Sopore: With business activity in north Kashmir’s Sopore town, once a hot-bed of militancy, picking up, youngsters particularly women-folk are turning entrepreneurs.
More than six boutiques, run mostly by young girls, have come up in the town, which has resulted in not only increasing the business activity in the town but has provided employment to scores of the girls, mostly from economically weaker sections of the society.
Fozia Ahmad from Hathlangoo Sopore is running a boutique – Fashion Tailors – in Main Chowk Sopore from last two years. “I left studies in 11th class, when my father died. The responsibility of managing our family’s economic needs came on my shoulders. We sold the little land we had in our village, and with that money I started my own boutique as I was already having knowledge of tailoring. Today, I am not only earning for myself but providing employment to 10 other girls,” she told Kashmir Reader.
As trade flourishes and more entrepreneurs’ open shop, customers are spoilt for choice.
Eleem Ahmad, owner of one of the popular boutiques — B’S Boutique — in Sopore said: “When I established the boutique in 2013, I was very much nervous and scared about this business, but Allah helped. Today, we have 11 employees, most of them females,” he said.
“We not only receive customers from Sopore but also from Kupwara, Handwara, Bandipora and Baramulla.”
Among the new business sectors, boutiques are proving to be fruitful and profitable for its entrepreneurs and customers. “Ladies from Sopore and its adjacent areas had to travel to Srinagar for buying new clothes on different occasions, but they get it here now at reasonable rates,” said another boutique owner. They said the tailoring sector which was dominated by males in past has been overtaken by girls.
Neelofar and Javiada are sisters running a boutique – Nida Boutique – in Iqbal Market Sopore from past one year. “We are educated and love our profession. Here we have to deal with women only. We are satisfied with the response we get from customers and we earn good,” the siblings said.