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KCR govt to distribute sarees free for Bathukamma festival

M Somasekhar Hyderabad | Updated on January 09, 2018

Scheme expected to boost Telangana's ailing handloom sector

At least one crore women in Telangana State will get a handloom saree free, courtesy the Government, in September. Chief Minister K Chandrasekhara Rao, who believes in nothing short of big announcements and mission projects says every poor woman above the age of 18 years will be eligible or it.

The largesse from the Government will achieve multiple goals. First, it will put more spotlight on the upcoming State festival of Bathukamma. Second, it will give a much needed fillip to the ailing handloom weavers of the country's youngest State. Third, it will generate the necessary goodwill to the ruling Telangana Rastra Samithi (TRS) Government and finally, it could accelerate the many welfare schemes that are under way.

The CM said the sarees should be distributed through the ration shops under the public distribution system on September 18,19 and 20. He urged all the MPs, Ministers, legislators and public representative to make the saree distribution programme a big success The Government machinery in districts led by the Collectors should monitor and supervise the programme. The CM asked KT Rama Rao, minister for IT and Municipal Administration, to write a letter to all the people's representatives.

The number arrived at to recieve the State gift is 1,04,57,610. The sarees have been ordered for purchase from the handloom and power sectors to support the weavers and workers. A significant number of the total sarees are being sourced from the weavers of Sircilla in Karimnagar, which incidentally happens to be the constituency represented by KT Rama Rao, son of KCR.

Bathukamma Festival

People in Telangana celebrate Bathukamma and Dussera festivals. Bathukamma was declared State festival after the formation of Telangana in 2014, as it is an integral part of the life, culture and symbolises family relationships.

Interestingly, the State Government distributed clothes to Muslims on Ramzaan and Christians on Christmas. For Bathukamma festival, it has decided to gift sarees to the poor women from all the communities, Hindu, Muslim, Christian etc., and from all the castes.

In 2016, women created a Guinness record with the largest number of women congregating at one place to celebrate Bathukamma festival on October 8, at the Lal Bahadur Stadium in Hyderabad.

Weavers

The plight of workers dependent on handloom and powerloom sectors is pathetic. Lack of work has resulted in some workers committing suicides. "The Government move to gift sarees for Bathukamma would create employment guarantee, which in turn gives confidence. By distribution of sarees, there will be more happiness among women and there will be happiness among the workers that they are getting employment. This gives us happiness," an official release said.

The Government is also speeding up the process of modernising the power looms. It has announced a 50 per cent subsidy on yarn and chemicals.

Published on August 27, 2017

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