Modi’s promotion of the textile is welcome, now go for a holistic revival with bottoms-up approach
GN Bureau | April 2, 2016
There has been a sudden revival of “nationalism” – at least of one version of it, and yet it is difficult to imagine that not long ago, one of the prime symbols of nationalism was not an animal, not a divisive slogan but a cloth. After independence, khadi was reduced to a formal uniform of the political class, and along with its wearers, khadi too lost its symbolic force. Its charm remained merely skin-deep.
Now, prime minister Narendra Modi has taken up the task of making khadi popular again. He himself has been a sort of brand ambassador for khadi, making his style of kurtas a fashion statement. His championing of khadi goes counter to the trend of even the political class giving up on khadi.
After Modi spoke of the virtues of khadi, Air India has adopted the fabric for its crew, and the government officers too may don khadi soon. For khadi lovers, it’s all good news.
In Gandhi’s days, khadi was a weapon of the swadeshi, against the imported cloth. After independence, its import should be no less. Gandhi promoted khadi because the hand-spun cotton cloth was at the centre of his vision for India’s self-reliant economy. In interior villages, where there are no job opportunities other than the rain-dependent agriculture, khadi-spinning and similar economic activities can give people a means of livelihood. That role of khadi remains as relevant today as ever, and it can help reduce the mass exodus to cities in search of jobs.
What the current push from the prime minister will do for khadi is to increase its demand. It will have to be complemented with a similar push to increase its supply from the grassroots. For that, the government, through the Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC), should do more handholding for the struggling and barely surviving cooperative societies in the field of khadi production – their problems go well beyond the lack of demand for khadi.
With Lockdown 4 ending Sunday, the home ministry has issued new guidelines to fight COVID-19 and for phased re-opening of areas outside the Containment Zones. The guidelines, issued based on extensive consultations held with states and UTs, will be effective from June 1 till June 30. The first phase of reo
When the whole world is fighting COVID-19, food and nutrition security has become a major issue. The pandemic has aggravated the existing food crisis in India, especially in rural and tribal regions. There has been less availability of fresh foods in most parts of the country, and the tribal community has
India is determined to “set an example” for the rest of the word in the post-pandemic economic revival, prime minister Narendra Modi has said, underling the need to become self-reliant. “There is also a widespread debate on how the economies of various countries, including
Close to 48 lakh migrant labourers have been able to reach home from the cities they were working in, as the Indian Railways have run a total of 3,543 “Sharmik Special” trains from May 1. Following the home ministry order regarding the movement by special trains of migrant worker
Before the novel coronavirus hit it, Mumbai about 10-12 lakh labourers from elsewhere had made it their home. The figure for the state of Maharashtra was another 18-20 lakh. As the pandemic spread and the Maximum City emerged as the worst-hit place in India, all economic activities came to an end, and with
For the rest of the world, it is not easy to understand China when it comes to politics or economics. Under pressure from the international community, it has accepted to open the country for a “comprehensive” probe into the origin of the deadly coronavirus. But it is not clear whether the Asian