Akeel Rashid

With little love for Govt. jobs, youth prefer entrepreneurship

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Will love, live and learn on our own conditions…

Sopore, Aug 17: What could be termed as a big shift from the traditional approach of securing interests by seeking a job in the government sector, many youngsters in Kashmir are fine with sorting their ways no matter how challenging it might look. In fact, more and more youngsters are finding start-ups as an alternative way of creating their own space on their own conditions while some even prioritize entrepreneurship over government jobs!

Jibran Khan, 28, is one among many such enthusiastic youngsters whose preference list never had a government job on it while he decided to carve an opportunity for himself by choosing to be an entrepreneur.

Khan, an MBA postgraduate, who hails from North Kashmir’s Bandipora and has some experience of ‘tour and travel’ business, recently inaugurated ‘Zero Miles Café’ in north Kashmir’s Sopore town with his business associate Javaid Mohroo.

On entering the café, one can find the horse-cart (Tonga) wheel hanging on the ceiling which portrays the local public transport culture of Sopore town. Khan has also dedicated one side of the wall, in his café, to the Fruit Mundi Sopore on which he has designed replicas of apple boxes; besides, reserving a space, on the other side of the wall, for the young artists who can showcase their work including painting, sketches etc.

Talking to Kashmir Images Khan said that he had never considered government job as his career option. “I never applied for any government service, but was always interested in establishing my own enterprise. After completing my MBA degree, I worked as HR Executive for a private company for almost 2 years following which I began thinking about doing something out of the box which made to start a tour and travel agency,” Khan added.

Khan, a big travel enthusiast was inspired to do something out-of-box after meeting people during his tours to various countries. “I have travelled to many places around the world and what interested me most about my visits to other countries was that I would get to know new people. This tendency of meeting new people became a strong motivational factor for me to start a café. I would get a chance to interact with the people from different areas and also I want my café to host the tourists.”

Khan counts his café among very few in Kashmir which has got live kitchen facility. “Zero Miles café is one of its first kinds in Sopore which has a live kitchen. The Chief Chef working at my café is from Delhi, who has previously worked in Abu Dhabi,” said Khan.

On the inaugural ceremony of his café, Khan considered himself and his partner as the chief guests. “We presided over the inaugural ceremony of our café ourselves, why to give someone the privilege to do so when it is us who have worked very hard for starting this café.”

Khan said that all the money which he has invested in starting up the café came from his Jobs. “Whatever financial requirements I had to fulfill came from own earnings.”

Khan’s café is offering jobs to specially-abled persons on priority basis. “We are prioritizing those persons for the job openings at our cafe who are suffering from any physical impairment. In fact, we have already recruited one person so far, who is specially-abled.”

Promising to serve ‘Brew coffee’ to its customers, Khan plans to purchase the required machines from Italy for this purpose and intends to encourage youngsters to use the space for discussions, readings and other creative activities.

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