NIFT (National Institute of Fashion Technology) roped in to train rural artisans

October 22, 2006

NEW DELHI, Oct. 21. – In an attempt to provide employment to 1.2 crore people under Swarnajayanti Gram Swarojgar Yojna (SGSY) in the country in the next five years, the government has roped in the country’s premier fashion designing institute, NIFT, to train village artisans and craftsmen to meet the requirements of the latest trends.
Sources in the textile ministry said, “Though the SGSY is a programme implemented by the rural development ministry, we are trying to create a synergy by providing opportunity to both rural craftsmen and the NIFT students. It helps the craftsmen polish their skills to meet the market requirements and thus enhances their employability.”
During the last two years about 50 lakh people have been given employment under SGSY and trends show that this year another 50 lakh people are going to get employment under the scheme. India is number one in carpet exports, having overtaken China.
The sources said NIFT has been imparting training to rural artisans within their villages and hundred per cent placement is also assured to them. They said NIFT is working in six clusters and more will be added in due course, for training of rural artisans. The textile ministry will provide all kinds of assistance in achieving the targets.
There is a proposal to earmark Rs 35,000 crore for the SGSY during the 11th plan. It is expected that NIFT would provide more students for the villages and clusters to train unemployed people. All the expenses on training would be borne by the rural development ministry.
NIFT is the first educational institution to link rural artisans to the urban market through intervening in the mobilisation, design and product development and market linkages. Under SGSY, NIFT has identified about 10,000 rural craftsmen working in clusters at Dhar in Madhya Pradesh, Hampi in Karnataka, Surendra Nagar in Gujarat, Kozhikode in Kerala and Birbhum in West Bengal for upgradation of their skills so that their products become viable commercially.
More than 900 NIFT students have visited these clusters and interacted directly with 3000 craftsmen for creating around 2500 new and innovative products. NIFT has mobilised the artisans at the grassroots level and formulated 280 self help groups (SHGs) under the project.


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