Press Trust of India

Srinagar tailor among beneficiaries of ‘PM Vishwakarma’ scheme

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Srinagar: Fayaz Ahmad Bhat, a tailor from Srinagar, is among the beneficiaries who received an identity card under the Vishwakarma scheme launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the national capital on Sunday.

An expert in making traditional ‘pheran’, a cloak worn by Kashmiris to ward off the winter chill, Bhat has been working for the last 40 years. He is among the 30 lakh beneficiaries whom the government intends to target under the scheme over the next five years.

Modi launched the ‘PM Vishwakarma’ scheme on the occasion of ‘Vishwakarma Jayanti’, under which traditional craftsmen and artisans will be provided collateral-free loans at a minimal interest rate.

Besides getting recognition through a PM Vishwakarma certificate and an ID card, Bhat and other artisans and craftspeople will undergo skill upgradation involving basic and advanced training.

Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha attended the launch ceremony virtually at the Union Territory-level function organised here.

Sinha said the scheme will directly benefit thousands of artisans of Jammu and Kashmir working with their hands and tools.

“Our outstanding artisans with creativity and hard work have not only preserved the priceless heritage, diverse culture and traditions but also kept the wheels of socio-economic growth moving. These hardworking hands are the strength of the progressive society,” Sinha said.

The PM Vishwakarma scheme honours the traditional skills of craftspeople and their exemplary commitment and dedication. It will ensure the Vishwakarmas are provided with financial assistance and skill upgradation and they are integrated with national and global value chains, he said.

Traditionally, Vishwakarmas are considered the drivers of growth. They are the personification of artistic power, lords of the arts, creators of diverse crafts and builders of enterprises, he said.

Unfortunately, a discriminatory system existed in Jammu and Kashmir for decades that has imprisoned the aspirations of communities engaged in traditional skills, he added.

Sinha said the administration — under the guidance of the prime minister — is working to empower poor, deprived sections of society.

“I am confident that the PM Vishwakarma scheme will bring revolutionary transformation in the lives of our Vishwakarmas,” he said.

The Lt Governor highlighted the key initiatives taken by his administration for the socio-economic development of the families engaged in traditional skills and handicrafts and handloom sectors.

Handloom and handicrafts are emerging as two very important pillars of our economy. The government has recognised more than 29 other crafts and brought them under the ambit of handicrafts and handloom sector, he said.

Press Trust of India

Press Trust of India is lead news agency of India

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