Now, the production of Machilipatnam Kalamkari will be geographically limited to Pedana town and its neighbouring villages

Kalamkari, renowned for natural dye art or designs on fabrics, has been registered in the Geographical Indications Registry (GIR) of the Government of India under the Geographical Identification of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999.

Members of Vegetable Dye Hand Block Kalamkari Printers’ Welfare Association, Pedana received the registration certificate from the GIR, Chennai. In the GI Registration, this art form has, however, been recognised as ‘Machilipatnam Kalamkari’. Pedana is 15 k.m. from Machilipatnam.

“The registration will enable us to initiate legal action against those who copy the art or design in any form. It also restricts the production of fabrics with Kalamkari art in the areas falling out of the registered geographical area,” said the Welfare Association executive member Bandaru Anand Prasad.

According to GIR’s authorised user no – AU/396/GI/19/12, production of Machilipatnam Kalamkari is geographically only limited to Pedana town and its neighbouring villages of Machilipatnam, Polavaram and Kappaladoddi in Guduru mandal of Krishna district.

The ingredients used in the preparation of colours, stages of applying the dye and designs on fabrics were also submitted to the GIR authorities for the conservation of the art as well as easy identification of violators anywhere. Nevertheless, the geographical identification was limited for a few areas of production – such as textiles and textile goods, bed and table covers, clothing, carpets, rugs, linoleum and other materials for covering existing floors and embroidery.

“Since the new status deals with promising the registered standards of the Kalamkari, even local artisans and production houses have no exemption from the guidelines, framed for conservation of the art, if they fail to maintain the respective standard,” added Mr. Anand Prasad.

“Now we have every right to seek legal action against the violators – who copy the art form on the registered products,” he added. On the other hand, the scientists of National Academy of Agricultural Research Management, Hyderabad were engaged in producing new colours meant for Machilipatnam Kalamkari and a special training programme on applying new colours was also completed this week.

As a witness of the existence of the art form, a wall hanger dating back to 15th Century AD, is still being displayed in Victoria Museum, London.

The article has been edited to correct an editing error.