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Artisans stare at a bleak future

Weavers claim that only their employers benefit from govt schemes, subsidies

Published: 07th August 2017 03:24 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th August 2017 08:16 AM   |  A+A-

Worker weaving a saree on a handloom in Nalgonda on Sunday | r satish babu

Express News Service

KOYALAGUDEM (NALGONDA DIST): Forty-year-old B Shyam, a weaver at Koyalagudem village in Nalgonda district, 50 km away from Hyderabad, has been weaving silk and cotton (SICO) mix yarn for last 27 years. While working with his wife on a 50m-long Sico at 10 am on Sunday, he rued not owning a house despite working for so many years.

“We make a meagre Rs 15,000 working for the master weaver. I could have earned much more than working even as a watchman,” he lamented. It may be recalled that Prime Minister Narendra Modi made statement in October 2016 saying that Khadi is not just for nation but also for fashion. However, Shyam added, “While a lot of glamour is attached with handloom clothing, working as a weaver, especially for a master weaver is far from being fancy.”

When Express visited Koyalagudem, on Sunday, where around 1,000 weavers work either for master weavers or for cooperative society of weavers, it came to light that most of these artisans stare at a bleak future while master weavers and cooperative societies are basking in profits. Kalpana Tadaka, convenor of Telangana handloom weavers forum, said: “Cooperative societies suffer from class and caste bias. Many times presidents and executive members of societies only accept those who belong to their own class or caste which defeats the purpose of a society.”

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