Is the Traditional Handloom Industry in Assam in Trouble? Evidence from the Weavers in Barpeta District
Rituparna Kalita

Rituparna Kalita,Guest Faculty at Department of Economics, Bhattadev University, Pathsala, Dist, Barpeta, Assam, India.

Manuscript received on October 13, 2019. | Revised Manuscript received on 21 October, 2019. | Manuscript published on November 10, 2019. | PP: 1934-1937 | Volume-9 Issue-1, November 2019. | Retrieval Number: A5167119119/2019©BEIESP | DOI: 10.35940/ijitee.A5167.119119
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Abstract: The handloom industry, one of the largest traditional unorganised economic activities after agriculture, occupies an integral part of the rural livelihood. Growth and sustainability of this industry is based on the transfer of skill from one generation to the next as well as their ability to adapt to market requirements. As per the Third Handloom Census of India (2009-2010), about 2.38 million handloom units provided employment to 4.33 million persons of which, 3.63 million workers are in rural areas and .698 million workers in urban areas, respectively. In Assam, by providing livelihood to millions of weavers and craftsmen in rural areas, a vital role has been being played by this industry in the economic development of the rural masses. However, over the last couple of years, it has been noticed that the situation has changed and this age-old tradition of handloom weaving as an activity is in deep crisis. Considering such a critical juncture faced by both the industry and the weavers alike, this paper aims at exploring the present situation of the handloom industry in Assam. An attempt of in-depth primary study of 200 weavers in Barpeta district has been performed and descriptive statistics has been used to analyse the primary data. Results show that the continuation of this tradition in future is under question in the district. A very less percentage of weavers’ children are interested in continuing their hereditary occupation of weaving in future.
Keywords: Conditions, Economy, Handloom Industry, Trouble, Weavers, Weaving
Scope of the Article: Construction Economics