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Saree scan: Is government going overboard?

india Updated: Oct 27, 2006 01:37 IST

STRANGE AS it may sound, the State government is all set to spend a sum of Rs 1,400 on the ‘inspection’ of a saree that is worth Rs 90!

According to an official associated with the massive exercise in which 2.5 crore sarees will be distributed among 1.25 crore poor women, a saree each from a lot of 10,000 sarees  will be picked up for scanning (costing Rs 1,400 each on every such scanning) comprising 18 specific parameters, including colour fastness and thread strength.

Under the scheme, being dubbed by the opposition as Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav’s move to woo voters in the coming Vidhan Sabha elections using public money, experts from the Union Ministry of Textile, New Delhi, the Northern India Textile Association, Ghaziabad, the Central Silk Board, Varanasi and the Textile Technology Institute, Kanpur, have been summoned for a dekko and ensure quality control. This, according to the opposition, shows up to what extent the State government is ready go to see the scheme produce the desired results.

Also, thousands of the state Government employees from different departments will also be deployed in the Herculean task of testing and inspecting 2.50 crore sarees. Teams of specially-selected state Government employees would be imparted a 40-day training for ‘inspection’ of sarees at the state-of-the art Textile Testing Laboratory of the Government of India in Mumbai.

One saree each from a lot of 200 sarees would be taken out for ‘inspection’ from 2.50 crore sarees. It means that 1.25 lakh sarees would be inspected ‘physically’ at the factory-level by these specially-trained state Government staff in the first phase.

In the second phase, one saree each from a lot of 10,000 sarees would be scanned using 18 specific parameters at the cost of Rs 1,400 per saree.

As if it is not enough, the whole exercise will be repeated once the sarees reach Uttar Pradesh and batches of 50/60 State Government employees of different departments will be sent for ‘special training’. They in turn will later hold camps in each district of the state to ‘train’ and share their expertise with batches of 50 to 60 government employees in every district.

Moreover, the proforma on which the ‘testers/inspectors’ would submit their report is being prepared by yet another team of experts, according to the official.

The tenders for the supply of 2.50 crore sarees worth Rs 250 crore are scheduled to open on October 30.