The DRCs would be established in a phased manner, according to the ministry.
Handloom Design Resource Centres: Boost to handloom industry in India! The Indian handloom industry dates long back and is known for its uniqueness and rich artisanship. Now, the Union Ministry of Textiles has undertaken more initiatives to promote handlooms in the country. Accordingly, now 10 additional Design Resource Centres (DRCs) are being established by National Institute of Fashion Technology or NIFT in Kolkata, Indore, Chennai, Kannur, Bhagalpur, Hyderabad, Panipat, Nagpur, Bengaluru and Meerut. The objective of these DRCs is to build and create an ecosystem that would focus on design-oriented excellence in the sector. Apart from that, the DRCs are also meant to facilitate designers, weavers, manufacturers as well as exporters in accessing design repositories so that they can improve and develop their products.
The DRCs would be established in a phased manner, according to the ministry. NIFT is an autonomous fashion educational institution in the country which comes under the Ministry of Textiles, and has therefore been looped into this project to provide its expertise and excellence.
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At present, eight DRCs already exist in various parts of the country – Delhi, Varanasi, Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Bhubaneshwar, Jaipur, Guwahati and Kancheepuram. The latest DRC was inaugurated in Kancheepuram on the occasion of National Handloom Day on August 7 this year.
Handlooms are a vital sector in India, especially in rural India, and weavers in different parts of the country are skilled in making handlooms. In fact, the handlooms in India and their fine quality and craftsmanship were one of the major aspects that had interested traders even before the colonial rule. Though industrialisation has posed a major threat to this sector and has caused the craft to nearly vanish from urban settings, weavers in villages and rural India are still keeping the craft alive by passing it on from one generation to the next. In order to recognise this craft, India has been marking August 7 as National Handloom Day since 2015.