Textile ministry to set up proposed textile parks in cotton belt; will boost employment
The textile ministry is contemplating a new policy to give a boost to the textile industry. It is seeking the approval of the state government to set up mini textile parks in each of the five cities (Bhiwandi in Thane District, Malegaon in Nashik, Ichalkaranji in Kolhapur, Washind in Shahapur, and Amravati), which have a power loom set-up.
Statistical data reveals that the state produces a huge 70 lakh bales of cotton every year, but consumes only around 15 lakh as raw material. The remaining 55 lakh is exported to countries like Thailand, China and Bangladesh, and to neighbouring 'textile states' like Tamil Nadu and Gujarat.
"In fact, abolition of the quota culture in January 2005 ushered a new era of opportunities for the Indian textile industry in the global open market," said a senior Mantralaya official attached to the textile ministry.
Maharashtra is the largest cotton-growing state, with 3.50 million hectares of land devoted to cotton, especially in Vidarbha, Marathwada and Khandesh. The new policy aims to give these largely undeveloped areas a facelift.
State minister for textile Naseem Khan said, "We have carried out extensive research, incorporated suggestions and feedback from other ministries, technical experts, farmers and corporates before drafting the policy, which will be tabled before the cabinet for approval early next month."
The implementation of the policy will not only generate large scale employment; the farmers will also be protected.
Right from the cultivation of cotton to the end garment, the entire process will unfold within the textile parks.
Highlights of the policy
1. Promotion of spinning mills and contract-farming linkage in regions like Vidarbha, Marathwada and Khandesh.
2. Cultivation of high yielding varieties/hybrid cotton with higher fibre strength.
3. To reduce the cost of cotton cultivation, basics like seed, fertiliser etc. shall be provided at concessional rates.
4. Hundred acres of land shall be provided in the cotton belt to start the integrated activities by establishing mini textile parks and hubs.