Minister of State for Textiles Smt. Darshana Jardosh today informed Rajya Sabha that to overcome the challenges being faced by handloom weavers due to Covid-19 pandemic, the Government has taken the following steps for their welfare:
- Since it is not feasible to hold conventional marketing events such as exhibitions, melas, etc. due to COVID-19 pandemic, Handloom Export Promotion Council (HEPC) has been organizing International Fairs in virtual mode, facilitating marketing and sales of Handloom Products in the domestic as well as international markets. During the year 2020-21, 12 handloom fairs were organized by HEPC in virtual mode. The fairs have been attracting considerable attention from both domestic as well as international business entities. Besides, 53 domestic marketing events were also organized in different parts of the country for the weavers to market and sell their products.
- During August-October 2020, 534 number of Chaupals were organized in various States to apprise the weavers about benefits under various handloom schemes.
- To support the handloom and handicraft sectors and to enable wider market for handloom weavers/artisans/producers, steps have been taken to on-board weavers/artisans on Government e-Market place (GeM) to enable them to sell their products directly to various Government Departments and organizations. So far about 1.5 Lakh weavers have been on-boarded on the GeM portal.
- To enhance productivity, marketing capabilities and ensure better incomes, 124 Handloom Producer companies have been formed in different States.
- Design Resource Centres (DRCs) have been set up in Weavers’ Service Centres (WSCs) at Delhi, Mumbai, Varanasi, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Bhubaneswar and Guwahati, through NIFT with the objective to build and create design-oriented excellence in the Handloom Sector and to facilitate weavers, exporters, manufacturers and designers access design repositories for sample/product improvisation and development.
Skill Upgradation Training Imparted to 56,934 Weavers
Ministry of Textiles is conducting training programmes for handloom workers through 28 Weavers’ Service Centres (WSCs) functioning in the country which are under administrative control of the Ministry. Since 2015-16 to 2020-21, skill upgradation training has been imparted to 56,934 weavers, of which 5,498 weavers belong to Uttar Pradesh.
Following schemes are being run by the Ministryof Textiles for the overall development & promotion of handlooms and welfare of handloom weavers across the country: –
- National Handloom Development Programme (NHDP)
- Comprehensive Handloom Cluster Development Scheme (CHCDS)
- Handloom Weavers’ Comprehensive Welfare Scheme (HWCWS)
- Yarn Supply Scheme (YSS)
Under the above schemes, financial assistance is provided for raw materials, purchase of looms and accessories, design innovation, product diversification, infrastructure development, skill upgradation, lighting units, marketing of handloom products in domestic as well as overseas markets, getting loans at concessional rates, etc.
Skill upgradation is a continuous process. Need-based skill upgradation programmes for handloom workers in technical areas viz. weaving, dyeing, designing, etc. were earlier conducted under National Handloom Development Programme (NHDP), Comprehensive Handloom Cluster Development Scheme (CHCDS) and now under SAMARTH- Capacity Building in Textile Sector.