Rupani Foundation for development of Gems sector in Gilgit – Baltistan

Sultan Ahmed, Masaid Ullah Baig and Ms. Gloria Gcheung  addressing

Sultan Ahmed, Masaid Ullah Baig and Ms. Gloria Gcheung addressing the introductory session.

By Asghar Khan

Gilgit, October 21: An introductory session on Gems sector was organized by Rupani Foundation at Gemstone Enterprise Development Center, Zulfiqarabad, Gilgit. Senior representatives of Northern Areas Gems and Minerals Association (NAGMA), Local Tour Operators, AKRSP and Serena Hotel participated in this session. 

Mr. Masaid Ullah Baig, Project Manager and Mr. Sultan Ahmed, CEO Rupani Foundation, briefed the participants about the objective of this session, as well as the vision or Rupani Foundation DSC00148for Gems Sector Development (Mine to Market Program). The guests later visited the lapidary for Gemstone Cutting and Polishing Training to witness the operations, first hand.

After detailed visit of the facility, the participants of this session assembled for a brainstorming session on how to collaborate for overall development of gems sector in the region. All stakeholders showed their great appreciation and admiration for the progress made thus far and also committed to work in a more collaborative manner for the development of gems sector which will ultimately bring positive impact in poverty reduction and economic development. 

 Established in 2006, Rupani Foundation aims to reduce poverty, enhance technical skills of women and unemployed youth, as well as promote social entrepreneurship and joint ventures. The Foundation has expanded its scope internationally and currently operates in Pakistan, VisitorAfghanistan, Tajikistan and the United States. Rupani Foundation’s vision is to become a global leader in the sustainable development of mountain communities which today continue to remain neglected throughout the world.

The Foundation, in collaboration with the Aga Khan Rural Support Programme (AKRSP) and Karakoram Area Development Organization (KADO), has established Gemstone Cutting and Polishing Training Centers across Gilgit – Baltistan as well as Chitral district and has trained 400 people in need of support, of which 55 percent were women. Many of these graduates have emerged as Master Trainers and Supervisors, and have now assumed a multitude of responsibilities in the production units. Plans are underway to convert the existing centers into half training and half production.

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  2. I could not understand the logic of working of RUPANI Foundation, AKRSP, KADO, etc. Most of them Institutionsare focusing merely on trainings which has no worth until and unless supported by a strong marketing team. In the marketing non of any institution is forthcoming and the intangible part of training slowly rusting with the clients and end of the day the whole society become losers at the expense of the white elephants working in these institutions. The same training is also available with KU. What it means the scarce resources are being chanalized in areas where end of the end no out put is expected and community well being is zero. The mangers of these institution should look with different perspective and under the vision of the Imamati Institutions should focus on corporate agriculture as well as developing micro-enterprises for sustainable income generation of people of Gilgit-Baltistan

  3. no where in your article is credit given to the previous VC of KIU
    Dr. Najam for taking up the challenge as well as the responsibility of sending students to Italy to learn gemstone cutting.
    If I remember correctly, he was rather keen to establish a proper marketing outlet, to ensure a sustainability of this project. Is there any progress?
    Kindly do provide details. thank you

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