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Duty relaxation to harm Jharkhand silk sector - CM
Apr '11
The Union government in the recent general budget has announced a reduction in excise and custom duty on silk imports to five percent from 35 percent.

However, stimulated by the significant rise in local silk production figures for last five years, Jharkhand Chief Minister Arjun Munda has called on the Union government to review its decision.

Munda underlined the fact that, over the last five years, the state's raw silk production has gone up to 716 metric tons from 40 metric tons in 2005. Now, if low-priced imports are allowed, it would not be long before that, China would procure raw silk from India, and India would be left with no other option but to buy back finished silk from China by paying a higher price, he added.

Munda, while inaugurating a seminar of silk scientists on April 26 stressed on the need to induce increasing number of people to join the industry. Above 200 scientists from all across the country participated in the two-day seminar to discuss several issues like boosting production and quality of forest silk, and those related to its processing and marketing, so as to cash in on the ever rising demand for the commodity.

B C Prasad, Director of the Central Tasar Research Institute stated that, as against present annual production of 1,050 metric tons, scientists are eyeing an annual production of 5,000 metric tons of raw silk during the 12th five year plan. He further stated that, Jharkhand, with its state-of-the-art processing techniques developed for processing four wild varieties of silk – Tasar, Oak, Moonga and Erri, could greatly contribute to this production target.

Further, Munda while stating the silk industry to be a labour intensive cottage industry, said that in order to boost silk production in coming years, increasing number of women can be provided training and induced to engage in silk rearing and production.

He said that, they now even intend to start dyeing process, which would facilitate production of finished silk within the state itself. Also he said that, with this local brand, they mean to compete with silk from Varanasi and Bhagalpur.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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