Handloom sector occupies an important place in preserving the state’s heritage and culture. Varanasi has a rich cultural past and Banaras silk sarees are an integral part of the Indian sartorial landscape. Varanasi handloom makes India proud of its heritage.
The handloom products of Varanasi have got wide recognition all over the country and abroad for their highly artistic design, colour combination, superior craftsmanship and long durability. Varanasi is specialised in cotton weaving but made a switch to silk weaving in fourteen century. Around the same time, motives used also changed bringing in a Persian mark. For the last few centuries, it has specialised in brocade weaving. The main product of Banaras is saree but recently there has been a thrust towards product diversification and weavers have ventured into making stoles, scarves, mats, made-ups like curtain, cushion covers, table cover and napkins etc.
In order to provide support to the handloom weavers and for the holistic development of the handloom sector, the Government of India has taken up various developmental and welfare programmes. The Government of India has approved 12 small clusters (covering 300-500 looms), one large cluster (covering 5000 looms) and one Mega cluster(covering 2500 looms) in Varanasi with the objective to empower handloom weavers and build their capacity to enhance competitiveness of their products in the domestic as well as global market in a sustainable and reliant manner.
Marketing has always been concerned for the weavers so as to sell their products to the buyers. In order to facilitate weavers of the Varanasi region, the Hon’ble Minister of Textiles had announced holding a special “Varanasi Weaves” Haat at the well known marketing place “DELHI HAAT” situated at INA, New Delhi from 16th October to 31st October, 2012. Dilli Haat in New Delhi is one of the prominent marketing platform where weavers and artisans from all over the country are given stalls for display and sale of their products on rotational basis. This special fortnight which will have a presence of 162 stalls of various individuals and societies from Varanasi, will provide a platform to the weavers of the city to showcase their artistic products besides the retail sale.
An advertisement for selection of weavers for participation in the Exhibition will be released shortly in regional newspapers of Varanasi editions in Hindi and Urdu. The weavers should submit their application at the office of WSC, Varanasi on plain paper indicating his name, address, phone number, product of Varanasi proposed to be displayed for sale alongwith 2 passport size photographs and a certificate to the effect that the products produced by them are made on handlooms. The last date to receive the application at WSC,Varanasi has been fixed as 14th August, 2012, and the draw for selection will be held on 27th August 2012 at 11.30 am in WSC, Varanasi by a Committee constituted for the purpose.