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.
Prime minister Narendra Modi celebrated three-year of his government on May 26 by inaugurating Dhola-Sadiya bridge over the Brahmaputra river in Assam’s Tinsukia district. It is the longest bridge in India, which runs 9.15 km from end to end and connects Assam with Arunachal Pradesh.
IndianOil posted a net profit of Rs 19,106 crore for 2016-17 fiscal as compared to a profit of Rs 11,242 crore in the last fiscal. The income from operations for the financial year 2016-17 was Rs 4,45,373 crore as compared to Rs 4,06,828 crore in the previous fiscal. IndianOil`s income from
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) carried out first flight of light utility helicopter (LUH)-PT-2 on May 22 at its Bengaluru-based facility. The flight duration was about 22 minutes and pilots reported nil snag, HAL said. “These maiden flights of indig
Narendra Modi is like Greek mythology’s King Midas: whatever he touches turns into gold. Most people in this country are left dazzled by his ability to make dramatic announcements with a statuesque flourish. The past three years of the Modi government have left the
Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL) has added another feather to its cap by successfully commissioning another 270 MW thermal unit at RattanIndia Nasik Power Limited’s 5x270 MW thermal power project at Sinnar (Nasik) in Maharashtra. This is the fourth unit to be c
Chaudhary Birender Singh, minister for steel, said that the Indian steel industry is at the cusp of a significant milestone by becoming the second largest stainless steel producer in the world, leaving behind Japan. He said that the steel sector is only an example of all-round development in India. The c