No Hands on the Loom

Advocacy, Economics, Employment/ Livelihood, Policy

No Hands on the Loom: The New Handloom Policy

Jain, Devaki, Sethi, Ritu

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In the current context of competitive trading across the world it is extremely important for India to hold on to the special features of what she produces. Product differentiation, patenting are some of the ways competition is muted to the advantage of the seller. Today when the internet also communicates designs and all details without any human intervention, the imitation even plagiarizing of product design and competitive wars are intense. China, as it used to be the case of Japan in the earlier century, is able to manufacture "Hand Made" art and craft of almost all the other countries of this world, with machines, and since price competition is the name of the game in a world of trade liberalization, she is able to offload her imitated products in the very same countries from where the "handmade products " emerged. In this context , one of the ways or the only way that countries can keep their special "brand " is to strengthen the  presence of the uniquely handmade , support its survival and even subsidize , give  tax relief , take it on to the High road , to products that are uniquely from India 's civilization . Therefore it is very worrying that the newly declared policy for handloom textiles in India, has taken the view that for the sake of volume, they would now remove the restrictions imposed on the space provided to power looms and large mechanized mills that already have the lion’s share of textile production to take over the space provided for Handloom. Those who are dedicated to preserving Indian traditions in production, and also enabling the peop...
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