‘We are the torch-bearers of our land and we need to take up the responsibility.’
Young entrepreneur, Javid Parsa, who owns a franchise, Kathi Junction in the heart of Srinagar, in an interview with The Kashmir Scenario Reporter Sadaf Masoodi talks about Kashmir and the challenges youth are facing at the economic front. With a positive approach toward life, he is of the idea that Kashmir needs more people to fight the ‘economic conflict’.
“I am one among those who have stepped forward in the same direction”.
Excerpts from the interview.
Brief us about your background.
I hail from Kashmir’s Bandipora district. I passed my high school from a Government School in Bandipora. Then I pursued engineering diploma from Polytechnic, Dehradun. I went for B.Tech and dropped it after two years. Afterwards I finally graduated in Interior Designing and Architecture from Lovely Professional University, Punjab. I did my Masters in Business Administration from Maulana Azad University, when the Interior designing course didn’t impress me much. I got a job in Amazon, worked there for some time and returned to Kashmir. Now I am here.
How did you come up with the idea of starting your own franchise?
I had always wanted to be an employer rather than being an employee, this was the thing that reinforced my decision to quit Amazon and start my own work in Kashmir.
Where from did you get the assistance for setting up your franchise?
I got no assistance from anyone. It was entirely my own endeavor. Since I had worked in Amazon for some time, I started to plan the things based on the money I saved in Amazon.
After the floods things changed. It was a challenge again. I took financial help from my father and some other friends.
While setting up your franchise what challenges did you face?
I was setting up my franchise in Srinagar, a place I was naive of but then there were people for my guidance. Few days prior the inauguration of Kathi Junction, floods hit the city and everything went upside down. I got discouraged and thought of dropping my idea. Again my friends came to my rescue, they encouraged me and I stayed back. After two months, Kathi Junction was finally inaugurated.
What about the response now? How are the things working out?
I won’t say that Kathi Junction is the only place where you could get the best food but there is something that makes this place different. Kathi Junction is a place where apart from food, people get a plate of love in addition. This is a place mostly cherished by teens. I as an owner of this franchise have always encouraged a friendly and interactive relation with all my customers. In addition we always accept suggestions and feedback from our customers, in a transparent environment.
Amid the conflict most of the Kashmiri youth study and work outside. They hardly prefer to gather the courage of fitting themselves in here. How do you see this run-out of our youth?
If we think that there is nothing for us here in Kashmir, there definitely will be nothing. Let some people fight for the economic conflict. So instead of banishing oneself out, we should create avenues for ourselves and others. To quit Amazon wasn’t even easy for me, but then we need to take risks when in want of something big.
Where are your future plans heading now?
Surely toward expansion of the Kathi Junction! I am looking forward to start another outlet in my home town Bandipora. Kathi Junction only within a year has earned a good recognition and now I feel it’s the high time to expand the horizons for serving ourselves and others.
Your message for the youth who want to set up similar units.
If you want to do something, do it whole heartedly. I have seen people who start a business but never stop applying for other jobs. Successful business requires a good strategy. I dropped many other opportunities for my dream because I had a firm belief in my dream and hence I took a stern stand for it.
Recently you received the Youth Icon Award, how do you feel about having made a mark?
We are the torch-bearers of our nation and we need to take up the responsibility. It was an honor to get this recognition of being a youth icon. We need more youth icons for the upliftment of our society and people who would appreciate them to encourage more icons.
Folks! Let’s meet and have a gaga party at Kathi Junction. The place for Love and aolllll!!!