Kozhikode: The country is set to get its first-ever women-friendly shopping mall with female-only staff serving customers. The multi-facility 'Mahila Mall,' built for Rs 5 crore, will open in this city of north Kerala this weekend.
Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan inaugurated on November 24 the five-storey mall built on the Wayanad road by the city corporation under the state government's Kudumbashree project for women's empowerment and employment generation.
The mall, with 250 staff ranging from managers to cleaners, will give indirect employment to another 500 people, according to the project's CEO M V Ramzi Ismail.
On weekdays, the mall will function for 12 hours from 10 am. On Saturdays and Sundays, it will be open till 11 pm. The mall's entrepreneurs are the corporation's Kudumbasree wing's Unity Group that has been handling the civic body's IT section for 14 years.
The mall, with 79 shops and businesses, has been built chiefly with the aim of bringing Kudumbashree products under one roof. They include articles of general social use, more so for women. It will have a women's spa, beauty parlour, fancy-item collections, designer clothes showrooms, mini kitchen mart, micro bazaar, family counselling centre, soft skill training centre, yoga centre, women's bank, construction firm, stalls selling organic vegetables and fruits, car-washing centre, GST centre, and playing space for children, among other establishments.
An online centre in the mall will be open till 10 pm every night, providing the certificates that the corporation and the state government provide online.
Air-conditioned centrally, the mall has two lifts, a scanner, metal detectors, and a spacious bay to park vehicles.
At the 11 am function on November 28, the micro bazaar will be inaugurated by minister A C Moideen, mini supermarket by minister T P Ramakrishnan, Cafeshree by minister A K Saseendran, family counselling centre by minister K K Shailaja, soft skill training centre by minister Kadannappilly Ramachandran, and website by actress Surabhi Lakshmi.