RANGIA (ASSAM): An Assam sweet maker is on cloud nine, for he has received marketing tips from a man who himself is an international brand. Hriday Deka, owner of Deka Sweets in western Assam’s Rangia town, has found a guru of marketing and branding in none other than Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
“These are times when branding is important,” the PM told Deka in a video conference a few days ago. He was trying to assess how the Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojana, launched in 2015 to benefit small-scale traders, has helped the beneficiaries across the country.
Even the worst critics of Modi acknowledge his marketing acumen. So, when he told Deka to brand his ‘rosogolla’, the sweet maker took it seriously.
“Modiji enquired about the kinds of sweets I offer. I told him one could get everything that one usually gets at a sweetmeat, including rosogolla. He then advised me to brand rosogolla, but insisted on maintaining its standard. I have taken his words very seriously. People will soon know my outlet for rosogolla,” Deka told The Sunday Standard.
He is one of the many beneficiaries of Mudra Yojana in this small township, located some 50 km west of Guwahati. Back in 2015, weeks after he started his business, Deka received a bank loan of `50,000 and invested the money into his business. Once the loan was repaid, he availed of another loan of `5 lakh last year.
“When I started my business, I had two employees. It has now grown up to seven. The loan that I received twice without having to run from pillar to post has changed my life. Now, I don’t have to struggle to run my family. My income has risen with the growth of my business. I will remain indebted to Modi government,” Deka said.
He also said that during the video-conference, the PM advised him to promote digital payments, “but I told him people prefer making cash payments”. He said he would cherish his talks with the PM for the rest of his life.
The 35-year-old has become a local hero after news about his video-conference with Modi was widely reported by Assamese channels.