The Ministry of Textiles has set a target of extending MUDRA loans to five lakh handloom weavers in the next three years. This was announced by Union Textiles Secretary, Smt. Rashmi Verma, at a national workshop on MUDRA scheme for handloom weavers and artisans, organized by Office of Development Commissioner (Handlooms), Ministry of Textiles at New Delhi .
Presiding over the workshop, Smt. Verma said that the Government is paying special attention to i) skill upgradation of weavers, ii) loom upgradation, iii) ensuring availability of good quality raw material, iv) providing better access to credit and v) branding of good quality handloom products.
New model under MUDRA for handloom sector
The Secretary added that availability of working capital is a critical component in enhancing earnings of weavers. She said that the experience in implementation of Weavers Credit Card scheme has not been fully satisfactory; the per capita amount sanctioned is low and procedures are cumbersome.
Smt. Verma informed that the Government has formulated a new model under MUDRA scheme for providing credit to handloom sector. The new model combines elements of concessional credit such as margin money, interest subvention and credit guarantee cover.
Welcoming the initiative, the Chief Guest and Secretary, Department of Financial Services, Smt. Anjuly Chib Duggal said that providing loan to handloom weavers under MUDRA scheme should be a part of the regular agenda of State Level Bankers Committee. She said that this holds the potential to transform handloom weavers into entrepreneurs.
The Ministry of Textiles has requested every state and UT to prepare a three-year action plan to achieve the five lakh target. The plan would cover all handloom clusters, with the aim of extending MUDRA loans to all eligible, willing, non-defaulting handloom weavers. The plan would also identify banks for each cluster, keeping in view the presence of banks and their willingness to participate in the scheme. During the workshop, Tamil Nadu presented its plan for coverage.
Additional Secretary & Financial Advisor, Ministry of Textiles, Shri J. K. Dadoo; Development Commissioner (Handlooms), Shri Alok Kumar and Development Commissioner (Handicrafts), Shri K. Gopal were present on the occasion. Representatives from states, Indian Bank Association, banks and Weavers Service Centres participated in the workshop.