To boost traditional handmade and artisanal craft for its inclusive growth, Chief Minister, Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, Monday, sought Central support in fostering entrepreneurial cooperation by promotion of cluster initiative.He also called for complete focus on traditional craft which are women-centric such as shawl embroidery, chain stitch, sozni and crewel work. The Chief Minister made these observations during his meeting with the Minister for Industries & Commerce, Chander Parkash Ganga and the visiting Chairman of Khadi & Village Industries Commission (K&VIC), Vinai Kumar, here this morning.Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister, B. B. Vyas, was also present on the occasion.
Describing Khadi and Village Industries as a vibrant sector of rural economy, Mufti Sayeed stressed upon a comprehensive cluster approach to overcome the challenge posed by competitive imported products available in the market. He called for soft interventions through cluster methodology to ensure our artisans have proximity to raw material and that they are able to overcome the hurdles in marketing of our fabled handicraft products. “An institutional mechanism has to be worked out so that our artisans benefit from K&VIC’s prepare & procure policy particularly in papier machie, wood work, Basohli paintings and Kishtwari blanket-making,” he stated.Chairman K&VIC assured the Chief Minister on setting up of two heritage clusters, one each in Srinagar and Jammu, under SFURTI (Scheme of Fund for Regeneration of Traditional Industries) in the state. He also offered skill-based training to artisans so that they are acquainted with new designs which can be blended with traditional designs depicting local flavours.
SFURTI has inbuilt provision for soft interventions including skill training, capacity building and design development. To provide marketing support to Khadi & Village Industries, K&VIC is establishing 20 Khadi Gram Udyog Bhawans out of which two are being envisaged for J&K. On the issue of including transport component under SFURTI to promote state’s travel and tourism industry, Vinai Kumar assured the Chief Minister that once a proposal from the state government is received, it will be accorded positive consideration by exploring the possibility of carving out a special dispensation as this component is not included in the scheme (SFURTI). “We are also planning to organize a national-level exhibition for the first time in the state next year,” he stated.The Chairman also apprised the Chief Minister about their plan to set up a Multi-Disciplinary Centre-cum-Showroom for promotion of traditional industries at Pampore.