Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Thursday asked the officials of the Industry and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) department to take necessary steps for revival of the bell metal industry in Assam.
The chief minister Sonowal directed the top officials of the Department for preparing a roadmap in this regard in consultation with the local artisans.
Sonowal chaired a high level meeting of the Industry and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Department top officials at Brahmaputra State Guest House for bringing about revival and stimulating growth of traditional bell metal industry of the state.
The meeting discussed about various ways to preserve and develop the indigenous industry through different measures keeping with the modern industrial practices.
The meeting also discussed about methods of encouraging the artisans engaged in the bell metal industry so that they can be enabled to earn a decent livelihood through financial gains.
The bell metal industry in the state has faced myriad problems. Scarcity of charcoal and broken bell metal products – much of it without the right copper-zinc proportion – is hitting the industry hard.
He instructed the officials to take action for providing healthcare facilities to the artisans and also to gain insight into their grievances regarding raw material, furnace etc so that solutions can be found.
The chief minister further directed for taking help from institutions such as IIT for getting technical advice and holding consultations with technical experts for modernising and infusing new design elements into the products.
He also issued direction to the Industry Department to conduct a survey about the potential demand of the bell metal products in the international market and instructed the department for taking action to develop the skills of the local artisans for enabling their products to gain popularity in the global market.
Sonowal instructed for taking local artisans on board in this endeavour and directed the Circle Officer of Sarthebari Revenue Circle, who was present in the meeting, to play the role of coordinator in holding discussions with the stakeholders of the bell metal industry.