e-Marketing of tribal produce a shot in their arm
In times of these distressed periods, digital transformation across the entire organisation only seems to be a viable path to ensure that livelihoods are not disrupted
In times of these distressed periods, digital transformation across the entire organisation only seems to be a viable path to ensure that livelihoods are not disrupted.
There is little sign of the economy getting better and if one goes by the predictions and fears being aired by experts, no country can dream of a rosy future.
More so is the case with India which has a multitude of problems and democratic compulsions and obligations and also the collateral political pulls and pressures on the governments.
It is against this background that the move of the TRIFED under the Ministry of Tribal Affairs which works for the promotion of tribal commerce, to digitally transform the business it handles comes as a huge relief to one and all.
It is in the best interests of almost 50 lakhs forest dwelling tribal families aligning them to their skill sets, ensuring a fair deal to tribals in their trade of minor forest produces, and handlooms and handicrafts.
The value of this trade, according to an NITI study, is almost Rs 2 lakh crore per annum. To scale up the activities and create a level playing field, TRIFED has embarked on a digitisation drive to map and link its village-based tribal produces to the national and international markets setting up state-of-the-art e- platforms benchmarked to international standards.
Keeping every aspect of tribal lives and commerce in mind, TRIFED has also embarked on the digitisation of the procurement through government and private trade and the related payments to tribals. This is likely to be commissioned by August end. It is now well accepted that e-commerce is the future of retail trade.
TRIFED has to strategically respond to the emerging situation. The business arm of TRIFED, Tribes India, has launched an e-commerce portal which offers a large range of tribal products online. These products range from creative masterpieces and artefacts such as Dokra metal craft pieces, beautiful pottery, different types of paintings to colourful, comfortable apparel, distinctive jewellery and organic and natural foods and beverages.
TRIFED has also partnered with other e-commerce portals such as Amazon, Flipkart, Snapdeal and PayTM to provide market access to its tribal artisans. The Tribes India e-Marketplace, coming on the heels of the Retail Inventory Management System which has automated the sourcing and sale of stocks, is an ambitious initiative to onboard almost five lakh tribal artisans on the e- market platform.
All this not only helps stop exploitation of tribals by middlemen and brokers, but also provide timely support to the otherwise struggling tribal families in the country.
If this measure were not to be taken, these tribals of our country would be left out. These belong to the most vulnerable section of our society (rather they have never been made a part of our society in the real sense).
The digitisation move alone is not sufficient to transform lives. It requires a very high level of commitment on part of those involved in making it a success. Let us hope all the connecting dots function properly and sincerely.