Soon, the state rural department will float a state-owned marketing agency that will not only train women in specialised art and crafts, but also help them produce and market their goods throughout the country.
The first of its kind, the agency will identify a few women from self-help groups (SHGs) and send them for training to countries such as Japan, Korea and China where they will be exposed to the technique of bulk manufacturing.
“Today, we see so many products in the market that come from other countries and are sold at a high price. Crafts like carvings in glass bottles and statues with intricate work can be learnt easily,” said state rural development minister Jayant Patil.
The proposal will soon be put forth the state cabinet for approval, he added.
After establishing a central agency at the department level, there will be ‘finishing technology centres’ or federations that will come up at district levels where the women trained will train others.
“ We have to make rural projects self-sustainable, especially women groups,” said Patil.