The Department of Cottage & Rural Industry, Government of Madhya Pradesh, aims to conserve and develop the traditional, non-traditional and heritage art and crafts of the State providing sustainable employment opportunities to rural communities, especially the disadvantaged sections comprising scheduled castes & tribes, backward & minority sections and women. It comprises the:
- Directorate of Handlooms
- Directorate of Sericulture
- Madhya Pradesh Khadi and Village Industries Board
- Madhya Pradesh
- Sant Ravidas M.P. Handicrafts and Handlooms Development Corporation
- Madhya Pradesh Silk Federation
The various sub-sectors of the Department together provide sustainable employment support to approximately two lakh livelihoods.
The Department works with Self-Help Groups (SHGs), Small and Medium Entrepreneurs (SMEs) and Cooperative Societies mainly through the cluster-approach to cover the vast range of rural industries comprising handlooms, handicrafts, silk production, khadi and other village industries.
Quality-of-life considerations towards its constituents, is part of the Department’s area of concern. It welcomes private sector and NGO participation.
Partnerships of the Department include
- NID (Design Development with MP Handicrafts and Handlooms Development Corporation)
- Hindustan Lever Limited (with the Khadi & Village Industries Board)
- Central Silk Board (with Directorate of Sericulture)
- National Handloom Development Corporation
- National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation
- National Backward Classes Finance and Development Corporation and
- National Scheduled Castes Finance and Development.
The Directorate of Handlooms & Handicrafts focuses on the weavers and craftsmen who keep alive their traditional livelihoods (the weaving traditions of Chanderi and Maheshwar go back several centuries, providing case studies in sustainability). Assistance is provided by way of credit facilities, facilitation of raw material, technology transfer, quality consciousness, design development, skill-upgradation and marketing support. The Directorate not only implements the Department’s policies but also provides evaluatory feed-back.
The craftsmen of Madhya Pradesh produce a rich variety of skillfully worked products. The weaves range from fine cottons and silks (both mulberry and tussar) to coarse and basic weaves. The crafts range from stone engraving, jewellery, terracotta and woodwork to bell-metal and textile printing. Products from simple bamboo items to teak and bamboo furniture, tribal motifs in metal to highly artistic brass statues, hand block-printed cotton materials to the elegant weaves of the Chanderi and Maheshwar silk sarees extol the skill of its artisans. The Handicraft & Handloom Development Corporation supports this wide range of handicrafts through capacity-building, intervention and comprehensive marketing strategy.
The Khadi and Village Industries Board channels the large array of goods produced by the sector through its network of production and marketing outlets.The production and marketing of spices, The ‘Vindhya Valley’ programme interfaces the marketing skills of corporate giant Hindustan Lever Ltd (HLL) and SHG micro-enterprise.
The Directorate of Sericulture runs a comprehensive ‘soil to silk’ programme to encourage silk production. Particular attention is being paid to technology transfer and R&D facilities for the production of superior quality silk. Although much of the Tussar (wild silk) production has now passed on to the new State of Chhattisgarh, interventions to boost production in Madhya Pradesh are underway and are yielding exciting results in per acre productivity. The Directorate also liaises with the Central Silk Board (CSB) and NGOs. The sub-sector sustains a growing number of livelihoods, targeted to increase with the recent initiative of introduction of castor-based ‘Eri’ silk production in the State. The Silk Federation with its ‘Silk Mark’ authorization explores markets while pushing technical improvement through its R&D programme.
In sum, the Department of Rural Industries has devised cutting edge programme for integrated cluster development, support to SMEs, SHGs, voluntary organizations, marketing support and partnership strategies. It has formal systems for marketing assessment, training and evaluation. The Department welcomes fresh initiatives to supplement its design development, technology transfer, skill-upgradation, networking with stakeholders, and marketing strategies, both domestic and export-oriented. Training programmes drawing upon management techniques, best practices and awareness of global issues impacting the Sector underpin the Department’s efforts to refine and strengthen its delivery system towards the pursuit of Millennium Development Goals (MDG) in the rural livelihoods sector.