Meghalaya to be helped to develop textile sector: Irani

MEGHALAYA / Nongpoh:

Textiles Minister Smriti Zubin Irani here on Monday said the central government was committed to supplement all the endeavours of the Meghalaya government in the development of the textile sector.

Irani was speaking after laying the foundation stone for the Integrated Textiles Tourism Complex here, the headquarters of the Ri Bhoi district, in presence of Chief Minister Conrad Sangma.

Stating that 30,000 people from Meghalaya will be eligible for skill development programmes under the Samarth scheme of the Ministry of Textiles, She said Rs 8 crore has already been sanctioned for skill development of 7,200 Meghalaya people, in the textile sector.

Under the handicraft sector, Irani said the government had created a identity card called 'Pehchaan' to help the artisan avail benefits, including free tool kits for people coming from economically challenged backgrounds.

Over 3,000 Meghalaya people had already applied for the programme, she said.

As Meghalaya is one of the hubs of 'ahimsa' silk, Irani urged the Meghalaya government to utilise this capacity of the state and to promote the brand worldwide. "The sericulture sector stands to benefit immensely from the branding of the ahimsa silk," she said.

Sangma said the Integrated Textiles Tourism Complex would not only benefit farmers and artisans but also boost the tourism sector.

"The complex will offer opportunity for tourists seeking unique experiences through leisure activities revolving around handloom and textile production. This innovative project will go a long way in ensuring that both the textile and the tourism sector develops," he said.