The handloom industry is one of the industries which uses labour intensive techniques. The total number of people currently employed in this sector/industry is 43.32 lakhs as per the census of 2009-10. Handloom weaving constitutes one of the richest and most vibrant aspects of Indian cultural heritage, hence Ministry of Textiles GOI is making serious efforts to sustain and promote handloom sector in different parts of the country.
For overall development of handloom industry/sector and welfare of handloom weavers, the Government of India has taken various policy initiatives and schemes interventions like cluster approach, technological up-gradation, marketing promotion, revival of viable and potentially viable societies through loan waiver and recapitalization assistance, availability of subsidized yarn and credit, besides, providing health and life insurance cover to the handloom weavers. The details of schemes being implemented by Ministry of Textiles, GOI are as under:-
Integrated Handloom Development Scheme provides need based inputs to clusters of 300 500 handlooms or Groups of 10 100 weavers for making them self sustainable by providing them financial assistance for margin money, new looms and accessories, skill upgradation, marketing opportunities and for construction of worksheds etc.
Marketing and Export Promotion Scheme provides platform to the weavers and their organizations to participate in the domestic as well as international trade events and sell their products directly to the buyers.
Handloom Weavers Comprehensive Welfare Scheme: This comprises of two separate schemes viz. the Health Insurance Scheme (HIS) for providing Health Insurance to the Handloom weavers and Mahatma Gandhi Bunkar BimaYojana (MGBBY) for providing Life insurance cover in case of natural/ accidental death, total/partial disability due to accident.
Mill Gate Price Scheme: This scheme makes available all types of yarn at mill gate price to the eligible handloom agencies to facilitate regular supply of basic raw material to the handloom weavers and to optimize their employment potential. Under the scheme, the Government of India reimburses the transportation expenses involved in the supply of yarn from mill to godown of the user agencies. In addition, a new component of 10% price subsidy on hank yarn has been added to the scheme since January 2012 for supply of cotton and silk yarn to handloom weavers and their cooperative societies.
Diversified Handloom Development Scheme: This scheme provides assistance for technological and skill-upgradation of weavers for design and product development through 25 Weavers™ Service Centres and 05 Indian Institutes of Handloom Technology all over the country to improve the productivity and earnings of the handloom weavers.
Revival Reform and Restructuring Package (RRR): In order to open the choked credit lines to enable access to fresh credit for handloom sector, GOI has approved RRR package for waiver of overdue loan as on 30/03/2010 for eligible apex and primary weaver cooperative societies and individual weavers. The Government has also approved weaver credit card under institutional credit component, providing margin money assistance @ Rs. 4200/- per weaver, 3% interest subvention for three years and credit guarantee for 3 years by Credit Guarantee Trust Fund for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises.
The financial allocation for implementation of the above scheme during 2013-14 is Rs 487 crore.
The information was given by the Minister of State in the Ministry of Textiles Smt. Panabaaka Lakshmi in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha today.