New Delhi, Jun 27 (PTI) Khadi and Village Industries Commission on Saturday distributed electric potter wheels to 80 families of four villages in Varanasi, with an aim to create local jobs for distressed migrant workers.
KVIC said the potters' community in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's constituency Varanasi is set to lead the country with “Swadeshi only” products this festive season.
Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) is providing training to potters in Varanasi for making earthen lamps, sculptures of deities and other pottery items as part of Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan.
KVIC Chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena distributed electric potter wheels to 80 potters' families belonging from four villages namely Itahradih, Ahrauradih, Arjunpur and Chak Sahjangiganj.
Each of these villages house nearly 150 to 200 potter families who have been engaged with pottery-making for many generations. However, due to old techniques of hand driven Chaaks, drudgery involved in manual clay making and lack of marketing support, they took up alternative sources of livelihood over the years. KVIC has set a target of distributing 1,500 potter wheels in Varanasi in the next 3 months.
The commission is also set to distribute 300 electric potter wheels and other equipment to 300 migrant workers' families, who have returned from other states facing economic distress in wake of the Covid-19 lockdown, in Sewapuri (Varanasi).
'KVIC has already trained 60 migrant workers' families so far and pottery tool kit will be distributed to 300 families next month. This is estimated to create nearly 1,200 jobs for the migrants labourers in Varanasi alone. The exercise aims at creating local jobs for the distressed migrant workers so that they don't need to migrate to other cities in search of livelihood,' KVIC said.
Beneficiaries of Kumhar Sashaktikaran Yojana present on the occasion spoke to the KVIC Chairman via video-conference.
Kishan Prajapati, a potter, said he sold nearly 3,000 Kulhars every day at the Varanasi Cantt railway station after he received the electric potter wheel from KVIC.
Another beneficiary of the scheme, Akshay Kumar Prajapati said he was able to sell nearly 4,000 kulhars and plates in the local Choona market in Mirzapur district and was financially self-dependent now.
Dayashankar Prajapati said he was earning a good livelihood by selling nearly 3,500 earthen glasses used for serving milk at Manduadih railway station in Varanasi. Potters said they were earning nearly Rs 20,000 a month by selling earthen pots.
'Potters in these villages of Varanasi have been specially making earthen magic lamps, traditional lamps (Deeya) and sculptures of Laxmi and Ganesh keeping in view the upcoming festivals of Dussehra and Deepawali. The idea is also to dissuade people from buying Chinese lights and other articles during the festive season,' KVIC said. PTI RSN BAL BAL