B-school aid for rural artisans

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By JAYESH THAKER in Jamshedpur
  • Published 12.10.08

Jamshedpur, Oct. 11: Rural artisans can look forward to honing their skills under top designers and also market their products in a more profitable and hassle-free manner in the first project supported by XLRI Social Entrepreneurship Trust.

Parichay, a brainchild of second-year XLRI students that links tribal craftsmen with the mainstream market, has decided to train artisans and help them sell their ware without middlemen. East Singhbhum deputy commissioner Rabindra Agarwal inaugurated the design and learning centre of Parichay at Samekit Jan Vikas Kendra in Khasmahal today.

Bushen Raina, the managing director of Tinplate, and Prof. Madhukar Shukla of XLRI were among those present on the occasion.

Artisans, mainly from East Singhbhum, will be imparted training in Pyatkar paintings, terracota, bamboo, dokra and grass mat weaving design.

Trainers from the National Institute of Design, National Institute of Fashion Technology and Delhi-based Pearl Academy will be imparting lessons to the artisans from primitive tribes.

Vikas Sharma, one of the co-founders of Parichay, said the main objective behind the initiative was to tap the skills of the artisans and provide them with help to sell their products.

“We would also be inviting interns from these institutes to stay at the centre and train the artisans. The effort will keep the regular flow of designers at the centre intact,” he told The Telegraph.

Sharma added that expert designers, including Atul Johri, have promised to extend support to this initiative.

“We would also be installing ceramic furnaces so that the artisans can come up with latest designs on terracota items. The furnace would be costing around Rs 2.5 lakh,” he said.

Sidharth Shah, also a co-founder of Parichay, added that the artisans would be staying at the centre to learn about the latest designs.