Prime Minister Narendra Modi on August 27 attended the ‘Khadi Utsav’ event in Ahmedabad and also inaugurated a foot overbridge named as Atal Bridge built over Sabarmati river connecting the eastern and western side of the city.
As part of the Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav, the ‘Khadi Utsav’ is being organised to pay tribute to khadi and its importance during the freedom struggle. At the event, the prime minister also tried his hands on the charkha to spin the yarn.
The ‘Utsav’ or festival is being organised at Sabarmati Riverfront, Ahmedabad in which around 7,500 women khadi artisans from various districts of Gujarat participated.
When the PM arrived at the venue of the event, as many as 7500 women were spinning charkha live simultaneously.
In his address, Mr. Modi emphasised on using Khadi products in day-to-day life to help the local industry and artisans whose livelihood depends on it.
According to him, khadi was made the symbol of the country’s self-respect by Gandhi ji during the freedom movement but post-Independence, khadi and related village or cottage industries in the country were not promoted that led to its decline.
He added that the way khadi became the force of the freedom movement and broke the chains of slavery during the colonial rule, it can also become an inspiration to make India developed and self-reliant by 2047 and for that, we all have to promote it.
The PM also urged the citizens to gift khadi products during the coming festive season.
“I want to make an appeal to the people for the coming festivals, gift khadi products made in Village industries. You can have clothes made of different types of fabrics. But if you give place to khadi in that, then the ‘Vocal for Local’ campaign will gain momentum,” he said in his appeal.
Talking about his government’s efforts to promote khadi, he said that the government added the pledge of ‘Khadi for Transformation’ to ‘Khadi for Nation’ and ‘Khadi for Fashion’ and the efforts led to the rise in sale of khadi products across the country.
The PM also talked about local toys which are environment-friendly and give livelihood to local artisans in the villages.
“In the past decades, India’s toy industry was getting destroyed due to competition from the foreign toy industry. With the efforts of the government, the situation is now changing. Now there is a decline in toys imported from abroad,” PM Modi added.
“22 Charkhas displayed”
The khadi festival event featured an exhibition showcasing the ‘Evolution of Charkhas’ by displaying 22 Charkhas from different generations used since 1920s.
It included charkhas like ‘Yerwada Charkha’ which symbolises the charkhas used during the freedom struggle, to the charkhas with the latest innovations and technology used today.
According to an official statement, it has been a constant endeavour of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to popularise khadi, generate awareness about khadi products and promote the use of khadi amongst youth.
PM Modi arrived on August 27 afternoon on a two-day visit to his home State Gujarat that goes for the Assembly polls in December this year.
During his two-day visit to the home State, he will take part in a host of programmes and inaugurate or lay the foundation-stone of multiple projects in Kutch and Gandhinagar.
In Kutch, he will inaugurate a Smriti Van that celebrates the spirit of resilience shown by people following the 2001 earthquake in Gujarat. He will also hold a roadshow in Kutch.