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TDP General Secretary Nara Lokesh (File Photo)
TDP General Secretary Nara Lokesh (File Photo)

TDP demands Rs 10,000 monthly aid for weavers: Lokesh writes to Andhra Pradesh CM

ANI | Updated: Aug 23, 2020 21:19 IST

Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh) [India], Aug 23 (ANI): TDP National General Secretary Nara Lokesh on Sunday expressed concern over the crisis due to coronavirus and demanded that the YSRCP government provide every weaving family Rs 10,000 per month till the pandemic lasts.
In a letter to Chief Minister YS Jaganmohan Reddy, Lokesh urged for providing Rs 24,000 under 'Nethanna Nestham' to every weaver in the State. He said, the eligibility clause under the scheme should be changed from "weaver with own loom" to "weaver". Due to the existing clause, a majority of weavers, who work under master weaver and in private sheds, are being deprived of the benefit. Mangalagiri town has 2,490 handlooms and not even one-tenth of them benefited from the scheme.
The TDP MLC said that to encourage the handloom industry in these difficult times, the Government should provide a subsidised loan of Rs 1.5 lakh to each individual who wants to set up his own handloom. The Government should buy all the stock available with APCO and make payments to them immediately.
Nara Lokesh deplored that due to lack of orders for the past two weeks, thousands of weavers across the state have been rendered jobless.

This problem is felt in Mangalagiri, Ponduru, Chirala, Venkatagiri, Dharmavaram or Patur in Nellore, etc. The textile sector is facing one of the toughest times in its history due to five months of Covid lockdown followed by heavy rains in the state. On one side, Covid lockdown has hit their business and on the other side recent rains in the state are making it impossible for them to work as the place they work is flooded with rainwater, he said.
The TDP leader told the Chief Minister that Mangalagiri, which is best known for producing wonderful handloom sarees and other items, had around 2500 handlooms and thousands of families living on them.
Before the lockdown began, the handloom weavers here were able to make 15 to 25 sarees a month and made Rs 450 to Rs 550 per piece. But now, they are forced to survive on loans from private individuals even to buy essential commodities, he said.
Lokesh said handloom textiles and crafts hold a special place in Andhra Pradesh's cultural heritage and weaving being a source of livelihood for thousands of families.
Nowhere in India can so many diverse weaving techniques be found together in one state. In terms of employment, it ranks only next to agriculture and provides a livelihood to more than 25 lakh people in the State. The sector has rightly been termed an art and craft sector, which should be extended a helping hand in its hour of need, Lokesh added. (ANI)