- As per the scheme, weavers belonging to the general category will get 50 per cent subsidy while weavers from SC and ST categories will get 75 per cent subsidy.
The Uttar Pradesh Government has approved a scheme under which the handloom sector will be powered with solar energy. The scheme, to be executed in a phased manner, will impact millions of families dependent on the handloom sector for a living.
As per the scheme, weavers belonging to the general category will get 50 per cent subsidy while weavers from SC and ST categories will get 75 per cent subsidy. An official statement read that 34 districts of Uttar Pradesh are “dominated by handlooms”. The number of handlooms stands at 1.91 lakh, while handloom weavers and weavers’ cooperatives are 0.80 lakh and 20,421 respectively. On the other hand, powerlooms dominate districts such as Varanasi, Meerut, Kanpur, Etawah. The number of powerlooms in the State are 2.58 lakh with the weaver community being over 5 lakh strong.
It is being held that the initiative aligns with Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s vision to make Uttar Pradesh the textile hub and connecting powerlooms and handlooms with solar energy in a phased manner is a major step in the direction.
Weavers stand to benefit in a big way with the use of solar power as they will earn incentives for employing it in their workshops. They will also be given solar inverters. Further, as per a provision introduced by the UP government, Rs 10 crore in the budget has been provided in order to power the powerloom sector with solar power. 50,000 weavers will be linked with banks. Relaxation will be provided where formalities are concerned. That apart, weavers will also be eligible for grants as per the One District One Product scheme (ODOP0. This way, it will be ensured that capital does not become an impediment in the way of the plan.
The ODOP scheme, introduced by the UP government, looks at the revival of aboriginals’ arts and craft products. It aims to boost the MSME sector while also promote unique products in the State.
Even though the textile industry is the cornerstone for India’s economy, it has been plagued by power shortages on a regular basis, which in turn impact production cost and has a bearing on production too. At the same time, the industry is energy intensive since it needs high-power equipment to function. In the face of these challenges, the scheme approved could prove to be a boon for the textile industry.