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India Needs To Return to The Handloom Bandwagon: Here is Why!

The British had ruined the cottage industries of India, and they remained dead even after the invaders had left the country

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Handloom Industry. Image source: www.power2sme.com
  • India has always boasted of a rich heritage of producing handloom apparels
  • During the rule of monarchs, like the Mughals, these weavers and artisans were greatly rewarded for their genius and artistry
  • With the advent of British, this changed and the cottage industries received a huge blow

India has been the treasure trove of raw materials for as long as history can remember. The rich and fertile lands of India were the primary producers of all kinds of spices and the people were expert in the art of agriculture. Not only that, they could produce magnificent paintings with natural colors which they extracted from the flowers, fruits and even spices. Different parts of India were known for their own distinct culture and art. Though dissimilar according to their place of origin, they had certain noticeable similarities as well.

Dhaka was famous for its muslin, Orissa for Ikat, West Bengal for Baluchuri, Madhya Pradesh for Chanderi and Maheshwari , Andhra Pradesh for Pomchampally and Bihar for tussar silk. The exceptional prowess of India in this particular field drew many foreign invaders to India.

A silk loom in Varanasi, India. Image Courtesy : Wikimedia Commons
A silk loom in Varanasi, India. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

When the British invaded India and set up colonies, they bought all the raw materials they could from India and sent it to Britain. The Indian market was flooded with cheap British goods, in exchange. The Drainage of Wealth began and indigenous Indian cottage industries faced a terrible downfall.

The artisans and workers were not appreciated like the olden days any more. Instead they were tortured and they had to produce whatever the foreign government asked them to. A deplorable state of the economy of India was inevitable.

Even after the British left India and India became independent, we were not entirely been able to get over the Company Raj. Industrial revolution, which was brought into India by the British, adversely affected the cottage industries of India. Mass produced industrial goods were far cheaper than hand-loom products thus people would always buy them. The living conditions of the talented weavers and artists of India is continuing to deteriorate.

A weaver making a saree in Bishnupur, West Bengal. Image Courtesy : Wikimedia Commons
A weaver making a saree in Bishnupur, West Bengal. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

However, today, numerous foreign countries, including that of Europe, appreciate the beauty of handmade garments and therefore the demand for them in the market is gradually increasing. The Ministry of Textiles of the Indian Government has taken a novel initiative by promoting the Khadi industry under the label of “Indian Handloom Brand” (IHB). 

A weaver in Kullu, Himachal Pradesh. Image Courtesy : Wikimedia Commons
A weaver in Kullu, Himachal Pradesh. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

IKEA is also playing an instrumental role in emancipation of Indian cottage industries by joining hands with many of such small Indian companies. So, there is still hope that the indigenous handloom industries of India will be able to reaffirm its position in the world market.

-This article is compiled by a staff-writer at newsGram.

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    This is the only way forward

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Next Story

WhatsApp and NASSCOM To Come Up With Digital Literacy Training To Curb Fake News

"This training educates people throughout India to be mindful of the messages they receive and to verify the facts before forwarding,"

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The first training will be on March 27 in Delhi and will be followed by more planned interventions like hosting training workshops for representatives from rural and urban areas along with roadshows across numerous colleges. Pixabay

As part of the partnership, WhatsApp and NASSCOM Foundation will train nearly 1,00,000 Indians to spot false information and provide tips and tricks to stay safe on WhatsApp.

The co-created curriculum, which includes real-world anecdote tools that can be used to verify a forwarded message and actions that users can take like reporting problematic content to fact checkers and other law enforcement agencies, will be disseminated in multiple regional languages.

“We are excited to expand our partnerships with civil society to advance crucial digital literacy skills that can help combat misinformation share on WhatsApp,” Abhijit Bose, Head of India, WhatsApp, said in a statement.

“This training educates people throughout India to be mindful of the messages they receive and to verify the facts before forwarding,” he added.

The training will be imparted by volunteers from NASSCOM Foundation who will launch the “each one teach three” campaign that mandates every volunteer to share their learnings with three more persons leading to a network effect.

These volunteers will post their takeaways from the workshops on their social media handles to increase the reach of these safety messages.

whatsapp

As part of the partnership, WhatsApp and NASSCOM Foundation will train nearly 1,00,000 Indians to spot false information and provide tips and tricks to stay safe on WhatsApp.
Pixabay

The first training will be on March 27 in Delhi and will be followed by more planned interventions like hosting training workshops for representatives from rural and urban areas along with roadshows across numerous colleges.

“The use of technology platforms like WhatsApp are inherently meant to foster social good, harmony, and collaboration, but are sadly being used by a small number of miscreants to entice anger and hatred by spreading false and doctored information,” Ashok Pamidi, CEO, NASSCOM Foundation, said.

phone
“This training educates people throughout India to be mindful of the messages they receive and to verify the facts before forwarding,” he added. Pixabay

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“I would like to urge all the connected citizens who want to join this fight against the spread of fake information, to come and help volunteer towards the cause,” Pamidi added.

Aspiring volunteers can register at www.mykartavya.nasscomfoundation.org

NASSCOM Foundation is the social arm of the industry body, National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM). (IANS)