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Rajasthan’s first handicrafts policy will promote artisans.

P Srinivasan I [email protected]

Rajasthan recently released its first Handicrafts Policy, which will benefit the artisans across the state along with generating employment. Industry Minister Shakuntla Rawat said that artisans of textile, metal and wood, carpet, ceramic and clay art, painting, leather craft, jewellery and other fields will be benefitted and more than 50,000 new employment opportunities will be available in the next five years in this field of handicrafts with the implementation of state’s first handicrafts policy. The objective of this policy is to uplift the handicraftsman by providing a better marketing system, reviving the traditional arts and the arts on verge of extinction and creating new employment opportunities.

Rajasthan has its special identity in the field of handicrafts in India and abroad including hand block printing, bandhej, tie & dye, terracotta, kundan meenakari, thewa art, Kota doria, jaipuri rajai, lac art, miniature painting, blue pottery etc. The state has approximately 6 lakh artisans. 

The policy aims to provide a marketing platform for the products of the artisans of the State, acquiring national and international recognition for them, improving the quality of the handicraft products and making them more marketable. Every year Handicraft Week at the national level will be organised at Rajasthan Haat, Jaipur in December. This will exhibit the major handicrafts of Rajasthan as well as of the other states of the country; seminars of the national/international level will be organized and buyer-seller meets will also be arranged. 

A ‘Handicraft and Handloom Directorate’ will be formed under the Industries & Commerce Department for the development of the Handicraft and Handloom Sector. The directorate will make wide publicity and promotion of products of the state and organise exhibitions through digital or e-platforms in coordination with the e-platform companies along with other activities. 

a ‘Handicraft Design Centre’ will be set up in Jodhpur through Handicraft Federation/Association/Union, State Government or Government of India to further increase handicraft exports from the state, generation of new employment opportunities in this sector, manage handicraft design development in sync with the changing global scenario & demand, skill development and technology up gradation. A Common Facility Centre for artisans and handicraft units will also be set up in this. This Centre will also be developed as a ‘Centre for Excellence for the artisans.

Handicraft Park will be developed by RIICO at appropriate places for the development of traditional arts and crafts, generation of employment opportunities for local people and sale of their products. A State Level Handicraft Museum at Jaipur Besides this, Mini Handicraft Museums will be established at the Urban and Rural Haats located in 13 other districts – Ajmer, Jodhpur, Bikaner, Jaisalmer, Udaipur, Bhilwara, Nathdwara (Rajsamand), Chittorgarh, Kota, Sikar, Dausa, Bharatpur and Jhunjhunu. A Model Handicraft Centre will be set up in Jaipur. 

This policy will promote eco-friendly crafts made by using natural dyes and natural products, utilizing agro waste, flowers & leaves and forest produce. Handicraft Design Bank will be established at the Rajasthan Haat in Jaipur with the purpose of facilitating the various handicraft groups and producers of the State in making products as per national and international demand. In this Design Bank, designs of all the major crafts of the State will be collected and compiled in electronic form. Private investment will be promoted in establishing Handicraft Skill Development Centres, Design & Craft Centres for handicraft education etc. 

Meanwhile, Rajasthan MSME Policy-2022 was also released which will not only give pace to industrial development but will also increase employment opportunities. 

Industry Minister Shakuntla Rawat said that Rajasthan Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises Policy 2022 will ensure a conducive ecosystem to increase its contribution in exports along with in Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) and to provide financial and technical help along with favourable regulatory environment. In this policy, it has been envisaged to set up 20,000 new MSME units with a cumulative investment of Rs 10,000 crore and employment generation for 1 lakh people. It has been proposed in the policy to facilitate 9,000 MSMEs to obtain Zero Defect Zero Effect (ZED) certification, she added. 

Meanwhile, Rajasthan Export Promotion Council and Rajasthan Small Industries Corporation Chairman Rajiv Arora said that due to the easy policy of the state government, the exports have increased by more than 40% in the last three years. The state is going to set a new record in solar, wind and renewable energy. He said that the work is going on at an extensive level to increase ‘One District-One Product’, while an inland container depot is being made in the state and the Civil Aviation Ministry has permitted to build Air Cargo Complex at Udaipur.

Industry department additional chief secretary Veenu Gupta said that MSMEs contribute 30% share of the country’s GDP and MSMEs are important for industrial development in villages and employment generation. She also informed that so far investment MoUs for Rs 11 lakh crore have taken place, of which more than 40% are taking shape at the ground level. 

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