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Batting for a better future

Batting for a better future
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Cricket runs in the veins of people across India. All across the board enjoy the game and even relish playing it even on roads, roadside parks and elsewhere. Since the craze to swing a willow is huge the market potential for various products needed in the game too is ever increasing.

One such main component that forms an important place in the game is the cricket bat. The bat is made using a unique wood is either found in English country side or is grown across Kashmir valley.

The bat industry in Kashmir is engaging thousands and every year dozens of new bat manufacturing units are being added to the list of already existing ones. The industry though a major contributor towards the economy during the past several decades is now losing its sheen and those who were dependent on this trade are finding it hard to ensure survival of the crucial industry.

Though lots of measures have been announced in the past but the industry has failed to witness a revival. Last year a team of Union Ministry of Medium, Small and Micro Enterprises officials held a two-day visit of the valley to find ways for extending support to this industry and help the Industry grow to its potential.

The team of officials was associated with the Meerut-based Process-cum-Product Development Centre (PPDC) which visited the valley to explore ways for hand-holding of MSMEs in wood-based industry’.

The team during their visit to cricket bat cluster in Sethar village at Sangam area have expressed desire to review the cluster that was damaged during the September 2014 deluge. This cluster has been earlier funded by the Union MSME Ministry and now it is keen to provide an impetus to the cluster.

One of the major reasons for turning this cluster and the entire bat industry into a failure is the increased cost of production and no access of the unit holders to modern day technology that would have immensely helped to bring down the production costs.

One reason why the cluster lacked any modern day facility in bat manufacturing is that various agencies have been involved in manning the crucial sectors here. For example the agency responsible for supply of plant and machinery at this common facility centre (CFC) for willow cleft seasoning at Sethar in Sangam is PPDC, while the agency approved for civil works execution is the public works department.

In addition CFC Sethar needs setting up of boilers, seasoning chambers, testing laboratory, computer aided design centre, training section, display areas for finished products and an approach for the consumers and dealers to the area.

But the proposals are witnessing delays which is putting the unit holders to loss. All this needs to be taken up on war footing as the bat industry is witnessing least manufacturing.

This despite the fact that Kashmir valley has abundant presence of willow trees which is considered as one of the best raw material needed to manufacture a bat of international standards.


KV Network

Kashmir Vision cover all daily updates for the newspaper

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