The Union Textiles Ministry is hosting “Hastkala Conclave” at The Ashok hotel in New Delhi this Friday seeking cooperation of corporate houses to do something for those keeping the country’s age-old handicrafts and handlooms alive.
Master artisans and weavers from different parts of the country will display exquisite handicrafts and handlooms. They will also give a live demonstration to create interest among participants. Thematic display of crafts of Jammu and Kashmir and the North-Eastern States will be an added attraction. Seminar on promotion of our age-old craft will also be part of the conclave.
To promote the treasures of Indian handicrafts and handlooms, various wings of the Ministry have joined hands to present a unique panorama of creativity, aesthetics and craftsmanship. “This would encourage corporate and industrial houses for sourcing handicrafts and handlooms as gifts and souvenirs. To preserve, protect and promote India’s rich and unique cultural heritage, the Ministry is embarking on its ambitious maiden venture to link the lowest level of handicraft and handloom sector – craftsmen, weavers and artisans – to the highest level of economy – corporate, consumers and MNCs – for leveraging their day-to-day requirement of sourcing gift and souvenirs. Corporate houses will be requested to show more compassion and responsibility towards our marginalised weavers, craftspersons and artisans by adopting a craft or a cluster. This would be part of corporate social responsibility. Industry support will enable us to set up a tripartite collaboration among the government, industry and craftspersons,” said a senior Ministry official.
On the need to partner with corporate honchos and those in the business of hospitality, the official said: “India is known in practically every country around the globe for being home to various varieties of handicrafts and handlooms which have multifarious hues, beautiful design motifs and innovative techniques. Despite the richness of our handicrafts and handlooms, our weavers and artisans are engulfed in poverty. So this is the reason for organising the conclave. We want to reinvigorate the unorganised face of the textile industry, infusing it with fresh ideation to resolve the dilemma of our mainstream crafts and looms tradition.”
The Indian handicraft sector is providing livelihood to over 7.4 million artisans. The Ministry seeks to revive languishing crafts and provide skill development for artisans.
At present the handloom sector is facing competition from countries producing similar products and also from cheaper imported fabrics. To improve the economic lot of weavers and to equip them to meet the challenges of globalised environment, the Ministry seeks to adopt a flexible and holistic approach. It has been implementing many developmental and welfare schemes.