New government initiatives to help development of textile and handloom industry

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2015-08-16 11:00:00 – New Delhi

Government has set its sights on the development in the organised and unorganised sectors of the textile industry, which is one of the mainstays of the national economy. The initiatives of the government have raised hopes of resurrection of the Indian handloom and textile industries, said K. Radharaman of The House of Angadi, which has a 600-year legacy in the textile trade.

Setting up integrated textile parks, increasing export, development of handlooms, promotion of handicrafts and increasing sericulture are some of the elements the government has stressed upon.

To Radharaman, who comes from one of India's foremost textile families, this is a move in the right direction albeit done with the right intellectual input.

The new initiatives by the government will definitely help the industry at large, if the government has the right intellectual inputs to make this happen. Most governments have failed in this regard -- not necessarily due to the lack of sincerity of intent, but generally due to lack of understanding of the issues at the grassroots, Radharaman, CEO and design head of Angadi Ventures said.

Angadi Ventures is the corporate entity that represents the family's business interest.

The House of Angadi has over the years contributed to the preservation of handlooms in the country. As early as the 1960s, the family created a model of rural growth, which is said to have been so outstanding that the then World Bank President Robert McNamara visited The Angadi Family Estate in Tanjore on his visit to India.

His company had patrons like former prime minister Indira Gandhi, cultural czarina of yore Pupul Jayakar and Gira Sarabhai, the co-founder in 1949 of the Ahmedabad-based Calico Museum of Textiles.

As of today, the company directly and indirectly employs over 1,300 weavers, and has been engaged in the improvement of their working conditions. It has also opened a showroom by the name of Angadi Galleria in Bangalore, attracting would-be-brides and textile connoisseurs.

Sharing the idea behind the brand, Radharaman said that handmade products, including textiles, are luxury in the purest sense. At Angadi, they wanted to create a space that could give handloom textiles the spotlight they truly deserve.

Radharaman, a multifaceted designer believes that design is a universal language - much like music. Moreover his own roots in the weaving community have possibly blessed him with an intuitive appreciation for textiles for which he takes pleasure in imagining, creating and therefore 'designing' in a wide array of disciplines. Also the fact that he has lived in India and abroad and have travelled widely has given him exposure to international trends and has helped him imbibe the best of east and west.

Radharaman also lends his creativity to the International Home Textile market and has worked with foreign design houses such as Ralph Lauren Home, Calvin Klein and Kravet Couture.

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