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article imageVaranasi textile industry to get support from fashion designers

By Sravanth Verma     Dec 10, 2014 in Business
Varanasi - The famous textiles and weaves of the ancient city of Varanasi may be set to get a fillip as the government of India ropes in popular fashion designers to work with the weavers and design more trendy designs.
A group of fashion designers met union textile minister Santosh Gangwar in Mumbai to extend their support ot the endeavor. The group, led by Shaina NC, a fashion designer and the spokesperson of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), included Manish Malhotra, Ritu Kumar, Reena Dhaka, Anita Dongre and Sandeep Khosla.
"As of now we are focusing on Uttar Pradesh and mainly Varanasi. We wish to work with the local artisans to develop designs as per the market need and would also help them to organise fashion shows and showcase their art on various platforms. But we are open to working as per the government's suggestions," said Shaina.
The group is in talks to establish design centers in Varanasi and showcase the products in fashion shows. Some of the designers are already collaborating with weavers. Sandeep Khosla for instance has already been working with Lucknow's craftsmen and may now take up a large project funded by the government to further promote the region's textiles.
Gangwar also told the media of plans to extend an employment guarantee to weavers under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MNREGS). "We are considering extending the MNREGS to the handloom weavers and artisans of the textile sector," he confirmed.
Varanasi is a major religious destination and important cultural center in India. However, neglect on the part of successive governments and huge population pressure have made Varanasi synonymous with creaking infrastructure. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi won the recent parliamentary elections from Varanasi and has declared his intention to turn it into a "smart city."
The current endeavor is part of this larger plan, which includes an MoU with Japan to develop world-class infrastructure within the city.
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