Bandipora: The Industrial Cooperatives (INDUSCOs) of the Handicraft Department on Saturday organized a day-long awareness programme for artisans at Bandipora.
The awareness camp was inaugurated by Deputy Commissioner (DC) Bandipora, Dr Owais Ahmad.
Addressing the gathering, the DC said that the objective of organizing the camp was to make artisans aware of various welfare programmes and schemes of the department meant for their overall socio-economic progress.
He said the Industrial Cooperatives is an association of workers and craftsmen involved in cottage or village industries who come together to undertake collective production, processing and marketing of goods manufactured by the members and provide them with the necessary services and assistance.
He said to keep the tradition of vibrant handicraft industry alive with vitality, the state government has taken a number of measures to uplift this industry and handhold the artists to improve their socio-economic conditions by providing them training, help in marketing of their products and provide them short term subsidised loans to grow their business.
He said INDUSCO provides Rs. one lakh financial assistance to registered cooperative societies in two equal installments.
He appealed to the artisan fraternity to come forward and get themselves registered with the department to avail the benefits. He asked them not to get discouraged as the world is now recognizing the importance of hand-made things and predicted a bright future for artisans in view of the growing demand in the market for hand-made goods.
He said with the advent of tourism season, the administration aims to organize exhibitions at tourist spots for providing market vents to artisans.
Dr Owais said the industrial cooperative society aims to develop self reliance, cooperation and self respect among the members, to purchase and supply raw material, tools and equipment needed by workers to obtain contacts from the government and other organizations and helps in providing source of livelihood and socio-economic development of artisans.
On the occasion, Deputy Registrar Kashmir INDUSCO, Vishaldeep Chandan apprised the artisans about the schemes available for their welfare. He said that the department is making efforts to make sure that the benefits of newly designed schemes for artisans percolate to the targeted beneficiaries.
He said there are 162 active industrial cooperatives in the district with a membership of over 1650 artisans.
Giving details he said there were 82 cooperative societies already registered with 847 members and share capital of Rs 1.94 lakh in district Bandipora while 80 cooperatives were registered under New Financial support scheme during the current fiscal with 812 membership and share capital of Rs 99600.
During the programme, experts provided awareness regarding the manufacturing and marketing process while JCI presented a detailed powerpoint presentation regarding various schemes and different craft related trades, and procedure for registrations.