Chairman of CSB KM Hanumantharayappa says the Central Silk Board (CSB) has set aside Rs 6.3 crore for development of the silk industry in Odisha in the current fiscal. They have already approved Rs 94 lakh and asked the state to send them more proposals under the Central Sponsored Schemes (CSS). Hanumantharayappa said Odisha has so far been provided 106 Buniyad machines. The machines have been distributed among women reelers in Fakirpur and Ata areas of Keonjhar district. Following this bonanza they can extract high quality silk yarn through the newly developed machine. There is a high demand for an additional 400 machines which will hopefully be provided soon.
Odisha is largely a tussar silk producing state but mulberry and eri silk are also grown marginally. The rich forest, hilly terrains and tribal population enhance the state’s agro-climatic condition for tussar silk forestry. The CSB chairman noted emphasis has also given to increase mulberry silk in the state. Two cluster-based programmes are being implemented in Ghatgaon block of Keonjhar and Kashipur in Rayagada district, he disclosed.
The CSB has provided Rs12.3 crore for implementation of Vanya Cluster Promotion Programme (VCPP) besides Promotion of Tasar Culture under Tribal Sub Plan (TSP) in Mayurbhanj and Keonjhar districts where around 1,500 farmers have benefited. The beneficiaries have been provided 90 per cent assistance as subsidy, he enthused.
Through capacity building and adoption of new technologies, Superintendent (Technical) and CSB Regional Office In-Charge Dasharathi Behera said that there was increase in the productivity of tussar resulting in economic gain of farmers. With the allotment of Rs 94 lakh, they have implemented Schedule Caste Special Plan in Bhuasuni area of Mayurbhanj where 300 families will benefit. Besides, for Buniyad machines, costing about Rs10,000 each, a subsidy of Rs 9,000 has been provided to women reelers.
About 20,000 tribal families in the state are practicing sericulture of which, more than 16,000 are tasar farmers. Last year, the atate produced 125 tonne of silk, including 115 tonne of tussar silk. Major tussar is produced in Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar and Sundargarh districts.