National Handloom Expo 2019-20, which will be held for 14 days began on Monday at Urban Haat, Nilakuthi, Imphal East under the National Handloom Development Programme (NHDP).
Speaking at the inaugural function, chairman of Manipur Handloom and Handicrafts Development Corporation Ltd. S Achouba Singh said that the exhibition is organised to benefit both sellers and buyers considering the upcoming Ningol Chakkouba festival.
Due to the shutdown of Khwairamband Market, most of the weavers are suffering during this festive season and the expo could help in reducing their suffering to an extent, he stated.
He said that the corporation procured raw materials and fabrics and made available at the rate of 20 percent discount to help the weavers of the state amid COVID-19 crisis.
Saying that threads and fabrics are made available at Wangoi, he said that people of Wangoi appreciated the corporation for availing the raw materials amid the pandemic.
He further appealed to the banks to provide weaving loans to the artisans as unlike earlier most of the weavers are aware of the meaning of taking loans from banks.
Achouba also urged the chief manager of the Central Bank of India, Imphal Branch Halayudh Kumar, who also attended the function as guest of honour, to provide loans to genuine artisans.
Altogether 50 stalls were open in the expo and it is said that products will be sold with strict adherence to standard operating procedure (SOP).
The 14-day exhibition is being organised by Manipur Apex Handloom Weavers and Handicrafts Artisans C.S.Ltd., Paona Bazar, Imphal under the sponsorship of Development Commissioner for Handlooms, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India, New Delhi.
Deputy Director of Weavers Service Centre, Porompat, HK Baro; president of The Manipur Apex HL Weavers and HC Artisans C.S.Ltd. Paona Bazar, Imphal K Indira Devi; officer in charge (marketing) NHDC Ltd., Porompat, Imphal Y Shantikumar and others attended the inaugural function as dais members.