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Indian Textiles Minister for doubling raw silk production
Jan '14
Raw silk production in India should be doubled to 46,000 tons by the end of the Twelfth Five-Year Plan period, i.e. 2016-17, with an annual growth rate of 20-25 percent in silk production, said Textiles Minister K Sambasiva Rao at a meeting to review the development of sericulture & silk industry in the country during the XII Plan period.
The Minister further aspired that the area under mulberry cultivation in the country should be raised from the existing mulberry area of 1,96,000 hectares to 3,00,000 hectares by the end of XII plan period, a press release from the Central Silk Board (CSB) said.
During his visit to the CSB, Mr. Rao launched a 10-ends concept Model of Automatic Silk Reeling Machine developed by Central Silk Technological Research Institute (CSTRI), CSB Bangalore. “Based on this concept model 120 to 200 ends automatic silk reeling machines will be developed and this will help in reduction of manpower and improving the quality of raw silk equivalent to imported raw silk,” the release said.
The Minister appreciated the scientists of CSTRI, CSB Bangalore for their contribution in developing innovative technologies and particularly machineries like: (a) Wet reeling machine for Tasar, (b) Vacuum permeation cooking unit for mulberry silk reeling, (c) Solar power operated eri spinning machine, and (d) Mechanical Tasar cocoon sorting machine.
“These machines will be useful in increasing the productivity, reduction of drudgery and improvement in quality of silk,” the statement said.
Mr. Rao suggested that solar operated spinning devices have to be provided to a larger number of beneficiaries in the north-eastern regions.
He also insisted on the need for taping resources from Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) and the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGS) for sericulture expansion in potential areas.
Keeping in view of expansion of the mulberry acreage and also the increase in silk production during the XII plan period, the Minister insisted that CSB & its Research Institutes should conduct more and more training programmes covering larger number of beneficiaries involving various sericulture activities namely, plantation development, disease management, silkworm seed production, quality cocoon production, and post-cocoon activities like silk reeling, spinning, weaving, processing, design development and by product development activities which would ensure self employment in the silk industry to boost their economic gains and returns. 
In her presentation, Smt. Ishita Roy, IAS, Member Secretary, CSB, explained that the mandate of the CSB is mainly on Research and Development activities related to sericulture and silk industry in the country.
She said the CSBs Scientists have evolved high yielding mulberry varieties and silkworm races, eco friendly farming techniques, mulberry and silkworm crop protection measures, mechanization in pre and post-cocoon sectors to reduce labour dependency in sericulture. 

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