10 per cent of seats to be reserved for students from Kerala

Industries Minister Elamaram Karim has said that the textile industry will benefit from the National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) centre here.

On Saturday, he handed over three new blocks on the campus at Mangattuparamba to NIFT. On the occasion, Mr. Karim said that the academic block on the campus would be completed in six months. The government had already spent Rs.40 crore on the buildings, he said. The Rs.58.65-crore package must also fund information technology infrastructure, allied facilities and purchase of equipment, he said. The Kerala Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (Kinfra) is the implementing agency.

Once the academic block was completed, the NIFT Centre would accommodate 1,000 students, the Minister said. The centre now offered five undergraduate courses and two postgraduate courses in fashion technology. In addition to normal admission procedure, 10 per cent of seats would be set aside for students from the State, he added.

Mr. Karim said that textile manufactures from the district, which exports Rs. 300 crore worth textile products, must form a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) to carry out infrastructure projects under the Town of Export Excellence scheme, a public-private initiative of the Central government. Since Kannur had been declared the Town of Export Excellence, the projects envisaged under it would benefit textile industries here.

The textile industry was in deep crisis due to the steep hike in the price of cotton, the Minister said, adding that the government was trying its best to help. The State government's scheme to offer free uniforms to students till Class VI would be a great opportunity for handloom weavers' societies. MLA C.K.P. Padmanabhan presided. K. Sudhakaran, MP, A.P. Abdullakkutty, MLA, Taliparamba municipal chairperson Ramla Pakkar, Kinfra Director S. Ramnath, Kinfra International Apparel Park Managing Director J. Krishna Kumar and NIFT Chennai Centre Director S. Devadoss were present.

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