A three-day Silk Expo and workshop on Silk Samagra was inaugurated at Manipur Sericulture Project Management Complex, Sangaipat in Manipur’s Imphal East District on Tuesday.
Union Textiles Minister Smriti Irani, State Chief Minister (CM) N Biren Singh and Textiles, Commerce and Industries Minister Th Biswajit were the special guest, chief guest and functional president of the inaugural function, respectively.
The three-day expo and workshop was jointly organised by the Department of Sericulture, Government of Manipur and Central Silk Board, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India. Addressing the well-attended function, Union Minister of Textiles Smriti Irani assured that the central authority would extend sustained support to propagate and expand the growth of silk industries in Manipur by empowering the weavers and farmers.
Considering the potential of the ‘soil to silk’ activities in Manipur, the Government of India is planning to set up eri spinning mill worth Rs 22 crore in the State and the foundation stone for the project would be laid within a month’s time.
Informing that income of weavers of Manipur can be enhanced if they are benefitted under Mudra Yojana, the minister said various researches and studies had indicated that wherever weavers had received benefits under Mudra Yojana, their income had gone up by 50 per cent.
A total of Rs 839 crore had already been spent for the growth of textiles industry in the North East region against Rs 2.86 crore under North East Region Textile Promotion Scheme in 2013-14, she said, adding that she had witnessed some unique indigenous produces and the potential of the silk sector of the State while inspecting the stalls of the Silk Expo.
In his speech, CM Biren said the upcoming spinning mill is expected to give employment to around 2,500 people. He added that weavers and farmers need to work harder so that benefits from the Central Government can be “effectively reaped”.
On the other hand, Textiles Commerce and Industries Minister Biswajit said that he had requested Smriti Irani to extend all possible assistance to develop the textile and silk sector of Manipur. Apart from releasing a booklet on Silk Samagra Workshop, the dignitaries attending the day’s function also inspected almost all the stalls of Silk Expo numbering around 60 coming from various parts of the State.