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Manipur to set up craft bazaar on lines of Dilli Haat
Jun '10
The government of Manipur is intending to set up a permanent craft bazaar, wherein Manipur's handloom and handicraft goods can be available 365-days a year.

Yumkham Erabot Singh, State Industry Minister, averred that, the craft bazaar will be developed on the lines similar to that of Dilli Haat, a shopper's paradise.

About 9.8 acre plot of land has been recognised by the industry department for setting up the craft bazaar near the Central Agriculture University at Eroisemba in Imphal West District.

With a forest cover of 3,000 square kilometre and 15 species of bamboo and 5 species of cane, Manipur's yearly bamboo goods are estimated to be of almost 2 lakh tons. More so, with 1.5 lakh artisans crafting out cane and bamboo products show that Manipur's handicraft industry has a great potential.

But surplus raw materials and skilled artisans have failed to find the product their righteous buyers, owing to dearth of organisation and market facilities.

With 3.39 lakh weavers, Manipur is able to manufacture 8.64 million linear metre of handloom cloth, monthly. Visitors and customers love Manipuri colourful ethnic wear, shawls and wide range of sarees.

Also, just like foreigners ensure a visit to Dilli Haat, permanent craft market will also help attract tourists to this state bazaar, informed Erabot.

Tourists visit the state even now, but owing to artisan's shop location within the rural area, tourists are unable to visit the shops, and artisans loose opportunity to trade their goods.

An artisan voicing her thoughts informed that, permanent crafts bazaar will help Manipur's handloom and handicraft sector witness an improvement. Dearth of market facilities are the main reason behind slow growth of the state's handicraft industry.

The craft bazaar will also help lure foreign buyers and traders, to whom the artisans are unable to get in touch, on their own.

Industry experts are of the opinion that, with the set up of this craft bazaar, chances of the yearly turnover doubling with time are also high. Currently, the yearly turnover of Manipur's handloom and handicraft sector is Rs 1 billion.

Although, the state government is going to take loans from the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD), financial assistance is also sought from the Centre, for setting up the bazaar, informed Erabot.

As of now, Erabot mentioned that, they were on the verge of putting the loose ends together of the project. Once done, the report will be submitted to NABARD, for finances.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk - India

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