August 9, 2020
Coimbatore : Textile Ministry is now now in talks with big commercial brands like BIBA and Arvind Mills to promote handmade weaves, Union textile minister, Smriti Irani has said.
“I think that’s where the challenge lies,” Irani said referring to the disconnect between hand loom products, the youth and modern markets, in respond to the observation made by Isha Foundation founder, Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev during a web conversation on August seven, the National Handloom Day.
“We are appealing to people in the commercial segment to source their cloth directly from the weavers, bringing about a synergy that was
long absent,” Irani said.
Sadhguru spoke about the need to encourage the Indian textile industry by introducing hand loom products in schools, tourism circuits and aviation industry and made a strong pitch for school uniforms to be made from handmade weaves of the state.
“It is a crime to wrap a child in a polyfiber. You do that to dead fish, not to living children. Especially a child’s body is very vulnerable to this – both their physical and psychological well being is impacted by polyfiber entering into their system,” he said.
Welcoming the remarks, Smriti Irani spoke about the several vital changes the ministry has instituted to make weaving a commercially viable proposition for weavers.
Though the government has invested Rs.1,300 crore for skill development in the sector, the minister acknowledged that a lot remains to be done.
“I’m conscious that much more needs to be done. We want to make hand loom not only better designed, but also better priced. Our endeavour is to also ensure it becomes an everyday, affordable article for more Indians so that our weavers get a bigger market,” she said.
To mark the National Handloom Day, the Textile Ministry also unveiled its plans to develop 10 craft and handloom villages across the country. The government hopes to attract tourists to these villages to popularise the products and help people discover the rich legacy of Indian weavers, she said.
Stating that “No nation, no culture ever has come up with so many varieties of textiles,” Sadhguru spoke about India’s pride of place as the primary supplier of textiles to the world at one time.
“Ancient India had the pride of clothing the world. We have to bring back the hand weavers in a big way because it (the handloom industry) is the second largest employer next to agriculture. I think in many ways we will be presenting India in a much more aesthetic and sensible way, and also in a commercially sensible way.” an Isha release, quoting Sadhguru said.