Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Friday distributed 100 electric potter wheels to 100 trained artisans in his Gandhinagar Lok Sabha constituency via video conferencing from Delhi, under Kumhar Sashaktikaran Yojana of Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC).
Seeking to empower and associate marginalised potters' community with India's quest to become 'Aatmanirbhar' (self-reliant), the Union home minister distributed the potter wheels, an official statement said.
As per the statement from the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Shah said the initiative would go a long way in strengthening the marginalized potters' community while also reviving the traditional art of pottery.
"I am glad to see the change that has ushered in the lives of our potters. Our government in the Centre is always concerned for better livelihood of the Prajapati community. The distribution of electric chaak is a gift from our Prime Minister Modi to the people of Gujarat," Shah said.
"Kumhar Sashaktikaran Yojana is one such step towards making the potters' community "Aatmanirbhar. I am hopeful that KVIC will continue to work for the benefit of marginalized sections," he added.
The Home Minister assured the potters that arrangements, including tie-up with the railway, will be made to provide proper marketing channel for selling their products.
KVIC Chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena informed that more than 17,000 electric chaaks have so far been distributed across the country benefiting nearly 70,000 people of the potters' community.
"This has impacted the lives of potters in a big way. With electric chaaks, the production of clay items has increased by manifold. At present, nearly 2 crore kulhars are made every day across the country. Potters are successfully selling these kulhars at 400 railway stations which is a perfect marketing platform for them," Saxena said.
Since the launch of Kumhar Sashaktikaran Yojana in 2018, the KVIC has trained nearly 750 potters from different villages in Gujarat. Besides training them in pottery making, KVIC has also distributed them with electric potter wheels and other equipment like blunger machines for mixing of clay. This has eliminated drudgery from the process of pottery making and also resulted in increasing the production and higher income of potters by three to four times.
In Gandhinagar district, KVIC has trained 100 potters and distributed 100 electric potter wheels and 10 blunger machines. The average income of potters under Kumhar Sashaktikaran Yojana has gone up from nearly Rs 3000 per month to nearly Rs 10,000 per month.