Even though the sheep rearing is a traditional activity in Uttarakhand, the wool craft is not vibrant and the rich heritage is on the verge of extinction due to non availability of quality Common facility for the local processing of wool. Bhartiya Gramotthan sanstha which has been working with the traditional Woolen communities for the last 25 years, took this initiative and approached various agencies to bring this solution at an implementation level.
With the sponsorship from the Ministry of Textiles, Govt. of India, Bhartiya Gramotthan Sanstha established a Common Facility Centre in Rishikesh. The common facility centre has started functioning and is providing the facility of carding, spinning and finishing of raw wool and woolen fabrics, to the artisans of Uttrakhand. This scheme will help the weavers/artisans of Ambedkar Hast Shilp Vikas Yojna & other Handicrafts workers of Garhwal hills as well as whole Uttrakhand state.
Uttrakhand, a pristine Himalayan state, is resource rich with traditional wool based livelihood systems. The buyers from the lower areas use the local wool for its good quality and warmth. Harsil Wool is one of the most popular Himalayan wool. The sheep rearing community typically move to alpine pastures in summer months from the low lying areas and then return during the harsh winter months. This traditional system has helped in restoring the mountain ecosystem. With the advent of technology and development of wool processing units in Ludhiana, Amritsar and Panipat, customers started to buy machine-manufactured wool. The centralization started to buy machine-manufactured wool. The centralization of Wool processing in the hands of a few, dissuaded sheep rearing communities to continue this tradition. To remedy this situation, BGS procures raw wool from the sheep rearers/ producers groups (through Working Capital Funds) and undertakes the processing of the wool at the CFSC by paying processing charges.
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