Film stars fade, designer rakhis sparkle Alwar cottage industry
Fancy rakhis are a new trend. Rakhis studded with gem stones are in high demand this season because they can be worn through the year, sellers saidjaipur Updated: Aug 04, 2017 19:41 IST
Rakhis with pictures of politicians and film stars, which once sold like hot cakes, are now a no-no in the handmade rakhi industry of Alwar.
Fancy rakhis are a new trend. Rakhis studded with gem stones are in high demand this season because they can be worn through the year, sellers said.
On Raksha Bandhan, sisters tie rakhis on their brothers’ wrists asking for protection.
Bachchu Singh Jain, a pioneer of rakhi-making, said, “People are not interested in rakhis carrying photos of politicians and film stars. This year, we have not made any rakhi with a politician’s photo.”
The rakhi industry in Alwar is 30 years old. More than 7,000 women are engaged in preparing rakhis that are priced between Rs 2 and Rs 200. Most of them work from home. Rakhis, made in more than 40,000 designs, are sent across the country and exported to some foreign countries.
The cottage industry has made many women in the city independent. “I am a post-graduate now with the help of money earned from rakhis,” said Heena Somvanshi (24) of Delhi Gate area. “I support my siblings in their studies with the money that I earn from this industry,” said Somvanshi who started making rakhis when she was in Class 12.
Savita Sharma (23) of Scheme No. 8 said rakhis made her independent. “Earlier our parents bore the burden of the family; now we are financially self-sustainable. Now we can afford luxuries such as TV and refrigerator in our home,” she said.