Online retail major Snapdeal on Monday partnered with the Himachal Pradesh government to launch a special e-commerce zone in Dharamsala.
The first of its kind in India, the e-commerce zone launched by chief minister Virbhadra Singh will facilitate sale of local handicraft, thangka paintings, Kangra miniature paintings and organic products for which Snapdeal will set up a dedicated online store.
As part of the pilot project, the online retailer will also take onboard local artisans and manufacturers as sellers on its marketplace and enable them to sell their products nationally. Besides, a special pick up facility has also been set for transportation of their products to customers.
"With the special e-commerce zone, we are looking at invigorating and mainstreaming local economies by linking and assisting them to harness the potential of the internet," said Kunal Bahl, Snapdeal co-founder and chief executive officer (CEO).
The company is also setting up a technology lab at Dayananda Model Senior Secondary School in the city to inculcate and enhance students' interest in science and technology.
Speaking on the occasion, chief minister Virbhadra Singh said Snapdeal's initiative would have a positive impact on the economy of this region that until now had been largely based on tourism.
The chief minister said, "I am delighted on the beginning of a new chapter for Dharamshala's growth and look forward to replicating this model across other regions of the state."
Urban development minister and Dharamsala MLA Sudhir Sharma expressed hope that the local businesses of the hill town would embrace this opportunity and grow their businesses.