Khadi: Not just for sake of appearances

Modi’s promotion of the textile is welcome, now go for a holistic revival with bottoms-up approach

GN Bureau | April 2, 2016


#weavers   #Narendra Modi   #KVIC   #Khadi  


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.

 
 

Comments

 

Other News

World is running out of antibiotics: WHO

There is going to be a huge lack of new antibiotics in coming future. A report by the World Health Organisation (WHO) has revealed that there is “a serious lack of new antibiotics under development to combat the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance.” The report called Antib

Made in India defence systems showcased in London

Navratna defence enterprise — Bharat Electronics Ltd (BEL) showcased defence products at the Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) 2017 Exhibition at London in UK between September 12 and 15.   BEL displayed Akash Weapon System (AWS), the medium-range, sur

Azerbaijan govt extends pact with co-venturers, including ONGC Videsh

ONGC Videsh Limited has announced that the consortium partners of the giant Azeri-Chirag-Deep water portion of Gunashli (ACG) fields in Azerbaijan have inked an agreement with Azerbaijan government and state oil company of the Azerbaijan Republic for extending the production sharing agreement for ACG oil

Securing official communication

The government is upgrading its electronic messaging service to a more secure network. The national informatics centre (NIC), its information technology arm, will migrate all services on ‘mail.nic.in’ and ‘mail.gov.in’ to ‘email.gov.in’. So in a few months all official e

Whispers of an Indian wind

India was wide-eyed when China aggressively pushed its Silk Route project – and it was then that New Delhi decided to give Beijing a dose of its own medicine by launching an ambitious initiative to re-establish maritime and economic links with 39 littoral nations. The grandiose effort seeme

AAI plans development of Lucknow, Deoghar, Rajkot and Allahabad airports

The airports at Lucknow, Deoghar, Rajkot and Allahabad would be spruced up by Airports Authority of India to improve and develop infrastructure to meet growing traffic demands. The authority plans to construct a new integrated passenger terminal building at Chaudhary Charan Singh Internation



Video

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter