ICSSR accepts Sambalpur varsity study on sustainable livelihood of weavers

As many as 16 handloom clusters in four districts of Western Odisha including Bargarh, Sonepur, Balangir and Sambalpur were chosen for the study. 

Published: 30th September 2023 09:20 AM  |   Last Updated: 30th September 2023 09:20 AM   |  A+A-

Sambalpur University

Sambalpur University. (File photo | EPS)

Express News Service

SAMBALPUR: A study by Sambalpur University examining the livelihood of Sambalpuri handloom weavers of Western Odisha, has been recently accepted by Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR) for the suggested measures to help weavers augment their livelihood and save them from exploitation of the middlemen. 

In the study titled “Sustainable Livelihood of Sambalpuri Handloom Weavers: A Study of Western Odisha”, conducted by professor of Department of Master of Business Administration (MBA) of the varsity, Tushar Kanti Das, he has thrown light on the diverse contextual factors impacting the livelihoods of weavers and their family members. 

In case of Sambalpuri handloom, despite being globally popular and their high product prices, many weavers, who have been engaged in the occupation for generations are not satisfied with the emoluments they receive. Their low level of education and rural orientation leaves them vulnerable to exploitation by middlemen, who are their means to access distant markets. Similarly, while they resort to informal sources of finance, they do not understand the terms and conditions of these loans, which pushes them into loan trap. With no proper social protection or safety net programme which can take care of weavers, they are now facing a livelihood crisis, with many opting out of the profession, the study found. 

As many as 16 handloom clusters in four districts of Western Odisha including Bargarh, Sonepur, Balangir and Sambalpur were chosen for the study. 

Das said, “When the number of family members are more in the family, the weavers prefer to work with master weaver or middlemen as they do not have to bother about marketing of products.

Here the weavers work on mutually agreed wages which is very less. On the other hand, if the family is educated or has not incurred loan, or the family income is more, then they prefer to work independently.” However, these independent weavers get less price for their Sambalpuri handloom product due to inefficient marketing skill, the study highlighted and suggested measures to tide over the issue.fied with the emoluments they receive.

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