Artisans seek Mehbooba’s intervention in reviving handicraft industry

Artisans seek Mehbooba’s intervention in reviving handicraft industry

Demand Artisans’ Credit Card on analogy of Kisan Credit Card

Srinagar: Jammu and Kashmir Artisans Rehabilitation Forum (JKARF) on Sunday took exception to the statement of minister for industries and commerce, Chandra Prakash Ganga, about not waving off artisans’ credit card loans.
Ganga has said in Legislative Assembly on Saturday that no proposal to waive off artisans’ credit card loan on the analogy of Kisan Credit Card was under consideration of the government.
In this regard, JKARF held an emergency meeting here on Sunday which was chaired by its president Haji Pervaiz Bhat. Rizwan Khurshid, press secretary, Parvaiz Naqqash, senior vice president, Altaf Kasmi, general secretary and other district heads were present in the meeting. Sheikh Ashiq, JKARF patron and social activist also attended.
“The minister promised us all help in reviving handicraft industry and addressing issues of artisans when our delegation called on him sometime back. However, his statement in assembly has endangered the handicraft industry of the state and disillusioned the artisans,” said Rizwan Khurshid in a statement issued here.
The artisans also sought chief minister, Mehbooba Mufti’s personal intervention in fulfilling the promise of reviving handicraft industry made by her late father.
JKARF president Haji Parvaiz Bhat, as per the statement, has said that the forum will continue to raise welfare issues of artisans at all forums till the present government does not fulfill its promises made with the artisans.
Sheikh Ashiq, social activist and JKARF patron, who participated in the meeting, demanded a separate ministry for handicraft industry.
In the meeting, JKARF members appealed chief minister to look into the plight of the artisans and demanded constitution of “Artisans and Handicrafts Advisory Board” which will safeguard the interests of artisans and the handicraft industry.
They also demand Artisan Credit Card Scheme on the pattern of Kissan Credit Card, which can ensure that artisans of state can have access to soft loans, the statement said.

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