Mumbai: Babus get a dash of khadi in their wardrobes

Chief Secretary Swadheen Kshatriya pays heed to Centre’s suggestion, requests colleagues, subordinates to wear khadi clothes to support small-scale weavers 

The next time you visit Mantralaya, don’t be taken aback if you spot most of the staffers sporting apparel made of khadi.

In a meeting held by Chief Secretary Swadheen Kshatriya on Thursday, he requested all his colleagues and subordinates to wear clothes made of khadi at least once a week.

Chief Secretary Swadheen Kshatriya said sporting khadi clothes is neither a compulsion nor an order.
Chief Secretary Swadheen Kshatriya said sporting khadi clothes is neither a compulsion nor an order.

Sources in Mantralaya told mid-day that all the secretaries were pleasantly surprised by the boss’s unusual request.

Commenting on the initiative, Kshatriya said the request was put forward in accordance with an appeal made by the Centre. “The Central government has sent an appeal to the governor’s office, which was later forwarded to my office. It’s an appeal and not a compulsion or an order,” he added.

According to officers, Khadi & Village Industries Commission (KVIC) had appealed the Centre to request all the government employees to encourage small-scale weavers across the country by wearing clothes made from khadi (hand-spun fabric) to work at least once a week.

A senior bureaucrat, who was part of the Thursday’s meet, told mid-day that wearing khadi — be it KVIC or popular private brands — would not be a problem. “We do wear informal outfits like kurtas, churidars and jackets to work. Also, our female colleagues are fond of wearing sarees and salwar-kameez made of khadi. We will be happy if our small effort promotes khadi production,” he said.

Good news
According to a KVIC officer, the sale of khadi witnessed a sharp increase in the second half of 2015. The officer added that the revenue generated was R753 crore in comparison to R581 crore for the corresponding period in 2014.

Babus go to school
Senior bureaucrats, who are guardian secretaries of districts, have been asked to spend a day in government/private schools and ashram shalas (tribal boarding schools) to understand the issues dogging the establishments. The Indian Administrative Officers of the rank of secretary, principal secretary and additional chief secretary were issued directives on Thursday. Kshatriya will also visit a school of his choice and spend a day there, said a senior Mantralaya officer.

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