Rural women in Manipur learn weaving skills to become self-reliant

Imphal, Oct.22 (ANI): Manipur has a rich and unique tradition of handloom and handicraft. The government and private sector entities are giving emphasis to promote the sector and generate employment opportunities for the rural women in the state.

All together 15 women are undergoing a four-month-long training programme organized by the Rani Handloom Industries at Wangkhei Lourembam Leikai in Manipur.

These women are quite happy to learn new weaving designs under the guidance of designer and entrepreneur Anoubam Kalpana.

“Since childhood I have lived with my grandmother and I got to see her weaving work. As I was born here and grew up in weaving family I myself like it very much so I started this work,” said Kalpana.

‘Rani Handloom Industries’ was established in 1960 by late Chungkham Rani Devi, who introduced the woven product popularly known as the ‘Raniphi’. To keep alive the tradition of ‘Raniphi’, the factory provides intensive training to its workers.

Till now, ‘Rani Handloom Industries’ has provided training to more than 2,000 women. A majority of them are engaged in weaving clothes from their home and earn quite well.

They make different products like Raniphi, Phanek, Silk sarees, Salwar kamiz, bed cover sets, mosquito nets and many other items.

Trainee artisan, Soibam Sushma Devi, said that they learn a lot at the Rani Handloom Industries.

“It’s very good to work together here as a team and we also get to meet each other at one place. If we weave at home alone then we don’t get to learn much but here we start weaving from 10 till 4 pm so we get enough time to learn and even if we have any doubt our teacher Kalpana taught us everything,” she said.

Consistent efforts are being made to empower women and help them become financially independent in rural parts of Manipur.

Such skill development programmes will enable the rural women artisans to become self-reliant. (ANI)

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