Chanderi comes under the Chanderi – Gwalior Cluster of Madhya Pradesh. Schemes pertaining to the empowerment and well – being of the weavers’ are mentioned below under the heads of Central level, State level and District level schemes.
At the apex of all government policies and schemes pertaining to handlooms is the Handlooms Act of 1985. Under the provisions of this act, certain articles are to be exclusively produced on handlooms.
Central Government Schemes
Weavers Health Insurance Scheme
The Weavers Health Insurance Scheme provides financial security to the weaver and his family in case of an adversity. The annual premium rate under the scheme is Rs.781.60 per beneficiary, out of which, Rs. 642.47 is appropriated by the central government, Rs.69.13 goes to the beneficiary and Rs 70 to state govt.
Mahatma Gandhi Weavers’ Insurance Scheme
Introduced in 2005, the Mahatma Gandhi Weavers’ Insurance Scheme provides life insurance cover for the weavers and their families. This scheme also provides the additional benefit of higher secondary education to the weavers’ children (maximum 2 children). A quarterly sum of Rs. 300 is granted for which no premium is required to be paid by the beneficiary, nor is an income certificate required.
Integrated Handloom Development Scheme
The Integrated Handloom Development Scheme has been formulated as an amalgam of four Schemes i.e. Deen Deyal Hathkargha Protsahan Yojana (DDHPY), Integrated Handloom Training Project (IHTP), Workshed-cum-Housing Scheme and Integrated Handloom Cluster Development Scheme (IHCDS).
State Level Schemes
The Madhya Pradesh state under the Directorate of Handlooms and Handicrafts also has several schemes and policies meant to benefit the weaver community.
Integrated Cluster Development Scheme
It provides financial support to clusters for purchasing raw materials as well as facilitating design development and marketing. This scheme also endeavors to develop and improve infrastructural facilities in the cluster including health, sanitation and education.
The Market Assistance scheme is an integral part of the Integrated Cluster Development Scheme. It was launched in 1998 to provide financial assistance to corporations, apex institutions and cooperatives for undertaking market related studies and determining the status of crafts in the clusters.
The Research and Development scheme which was launched in 1999 as a part of Integrated Cluster Development Scheme includes the provision for undertaking research and development projects in the handloom sector.
The Integrated Cluster Development Scheme has also incorporated IT into its fold.
The Integrated Cluster Development Scheme also endeavors to provide assistance to entrepreneurs, Self Help Groups (SHGs) and NGOs for skill enhancement, design development, marketing and export. It also extends financial support to individual weavers and entrepreneurs.
The State Award scheme, Kabir Bunkar-Protsahan Puruskar was instituted by the Integrated Cluster Development Scheme to honour outstanding weavers and for the promotion of weaving in general. The award is conferred on weavers for their exquisite creation, it includes cash prizes of Rs. 1,00,000, Rs.50,000 and Rs.25,000, each along with a memento. The level of excellence is evaluated by a special committee constituted for the purpose.
Special Project Scheme
A special initiative, devised by the State Handloom and Handicrafts Development Corporation, endeavours to establish linkages with national and international funding agencies for the empowerment of handicrafts and handloom clusters. It involves the creation of urban haats which would contribute in the overall development of the cluster.
Promotion and documentation of handicrafts and handloom products
Promotion and documentation is essential for the continuous employment of weavers and the preservation and organization of designs. The Cluster Development Program extends financial support for documentation including the preparation of a Design Dictionary and promotion of handloom products through print and electronic media.
Rural Development Assistance through Banking
In this scheme primary weavers co-operative societies SHG’s, entrepreneurs, NGO’s can anvil the financial assistance for their projects from the NABARD. The financial assistance is limited to 50% subsidy; the rest can be procured as loans from banks.
District Level Schemes
Handloom Development Scheme
Under this scheme assistance has been provided to primary weavers co-operative Societies/SHG’s/Entrepreneurs and individual handloom weavers in skill enhancement. Also, financial aid for procurement of loom equipment can be obtained from the District Rural Development Officer (DGO). The realms of Health, Education and Marketing also fall within its purview.
Promotion of Cottage Industries
This scheme has been introduced to promote cottage industries by providing financial assistance to cooperative societies and SHGs for training, procurement of equipment and marketing assistance. In this scheme 22 Groups of NABARD for cottage industries have been included. Following financial assistance is being provided under this scheme. Financial assistance can be obtained from the District Rural Development Officer or District Handloom Officer.