Here are some points to ponder about…

In 1983-84, there were 1,500 handlooms in and around Sowriyur. By 2013, the number has dropped to 12. On the other hand, there are over 1,000 power looms today.

Ten years ago, Sowriyur was self-sustained in the pre-loom activities such as warping, sizing, winding. Today, for warping and sizing, weavers have to go to Ammapet (55 k.m. from Salem), Tiruchi or Arasur in Sathyamangalam.

Earlier, every member of the family (which often consisted of at least four children) would pitch in and share the work. Today, most children want to move to cities and even go abroad. In fact, they look down upon weaving as a vocation.

S.G.