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New Delhi : For hundreds of years Odisha has been known for its exquisite Silk, particularly the Tussar variety, which provides livelihood to thousands of tribal people, particularly women. But the Silk weavers in the state were totally dependent on states like West Bengal, Jharkhand, and Karnataka for the Silk yarn, which increased the cost of the Silk fabric.

However, Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) has taken an initiative to set up Odisha’s first ever Tussar Silk Yarn Production Centre at Choudwar in Cuttack District. This silk yarn production centre will ensure local availability of Tussar Silk yarn, create local employment, and reduce the silk production cost. Tussar silk is one of the finest varieties of Silk that is distinguished by its coarseness and porous weave that give it a rugged and rustic appearance. The silk yarn production centre was inaugurated by KVIC Chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena on September 24, 2021, according to a PIB release.

The development assumes great significance as Silk comprises nearly 75% of the total Khadi fabric production in Odisha. This silk yarn production centre will create direct employment for 50 artisans including 34 women, besides providing livelihood support to over 300 tribal farmers engaged in cocoon farming. This will also create indirect employment for weavers and reelers in the state. Every kilo of raw silk produced, creates employment for 11 artisans of which 6 are women.

“Silk is the timeless heritage of India which is integral to our culture and tradition. It is also a key component of the Indian textile industry, particularly Khadi. With commissioning of this silk yarn production centre, Silk yarn will be produced locally thus reducing the cost of Silk production. This will give a major boost to the sale of the famous Tussar Silk of Odisha and strengthen the traditional craft of Silk,” Saxena said.

Set up at a cost of Rs 75 lakh, the silk yarn production centre is capable of producing 200 KG of silk yarn worth Rs 94 lakh annually. The production capacity of this unit will be gradually increased to meet the increasing demand. This silk yarn production centre is equipped with advanced machinery like silk reeling machine, re-reeling machine, spinning machine and others.