New Delhi: 56.13% artisans working in the handloom, handicrafts sector are women, as per the Indian Handicrafts Census,” Smt. Debasree Chaudhuri, Hon’ble Minister of State, Ministry of Child and Women Development, Government of India said while inaugurating HASTAKAARI – a maiden virtual exhibition of east and north east handloom and handicraft organized by CII today. She added that the number of women working in this space strengthens the vision of the Hon’ble Prime Minister of “Sashakt Mahila, Sashakt Bharat”. Lauding the unique initiative as “the first of its kind by an industry association in the country”, the Minister of State , Ministry of Child and Women Development, Government of India said that this vertical, embedded in the rural economy is upholding the “ethics of sustainable growth”.
Speaking at the occasion, Capt. Dibya Shankar Mishra, Hon’ble Minister – in – charge, Home, Energy, Industries & MSME, Government of Odisha said that HASTAKAARI translates into “discussions about the skilled and economically marginalized population of the country” and this, according to him, is the need of the hour. Capt. Mishra emphasized that the Prime Minister’s vision of a $5 trillion economy will move forward only when the rural economy is revived. He cited the example of his state, Odisha which, according to Capt. Mishra is pulling through in pandemic times due to relentless work and efforts put in by artisans and agri workers. Speaking about the rich history of Odisha with its flourishing handicrafts trading links with African countries and Far East, the Minister on Charge, Home, Energy, Industries & MSME, Government of Odisha said that rural development through artisanal activities should be the new national narrative.
Mr H K Sharma, Secretary, Department of Commerce & Industries, Government of Sikkim called for the creation of a single market hub for the North Eastern states for sourcing suppliers and buyers to give the required boost to this space and also to enhance competitiveness of their products globally.
In order to promote the Handloom and the Handicrafts sector in the Eastern and North Eastern Region, the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), celebrating its 125 years of nation building launched “ Hastakaari” today which is essentially a tribute and salute to the homegrown master craftsmen by providing a virtual corridor into a global e-marketplace.
Hastakaari 2020, a virtual exhibition, conference, and market linkages platform will promote livelihood for rural artisans and woman of the regions. The prime objective of launching the platform is to create a niche market for the handloom and the handicrafts sector the Region. Handicraft and Handloom workers, and rural entrepreneurs from the States of Assam, Manipur, Tripura, Mizoram, Nagaland and from Odisha, Jharkhand, West Bengal and Sikkim are participating and displaying their products on this online expo and marketplace which starts from today and will be on till 14 November 2020.