The traditional weavers of Anakaputhur is a town in Kancheepuram district in the state of Tamil Nadu, who are bent on keeping the creative legacy of the place alive have now turned to ‘vettiver’ (Chrysopogon zizanioides) as raw material for a fabric, after trying their hands at several natural fibres, including aloe vera, coconut husk, banana, and jute.
The saree made of vettiver was recently launched by Selima Ahmad, president, Bangladesh Women Chamber of Commerce and Industry, appreciated the efforts of women weavers in making their economy stable.
Selima Ahmad said that as they have a strong base for women entrepreneurs in Bangladesh and are rich in bananas, which can be used for making fibre. Bangladesh would like to take support from Indian women, who can share their knowledge with their counterparts in Bangladesh for which they plan to arrange for a trip for Indian women weavers to Bangladesh. They need a strong tie-up between women in these two countries to meet the market needs from other countries.
While, R. Lakshmi, manager, Indian Overseas Bank, Anakaputhur branch, said that the bank had been lending support to the weavers to the tune of Rs. 40 lakh. Prompt repayment by the weavers had allowed the bank to extend more credit to them.
According to one of the weavers at Anakaputhur, A. Laila, Vettiver is being purchased in bulk from growers in the Javadhu Hills of Tiruvannamalai district. This fibre takes colours well but they need to put in a lot of effort to keep the quality intact and it take around six days of hard work to produce a saree of six yards. Each saree would fetch them anything between Rs. 2,000 and Rs. 4,000.
Weavers of Anakaputhur have started making use Chrysopogon zizanioides, commonly known as vetiver is a perennial grass, popularly known as khus as raw material to weave saree, which will soon gain popularity globally through proper marketing and can help create global bond between Bangladesh and India.
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