When the country was struggling hard with deadly Coronavirus, Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC), an autonomous body under Ministry of MSME, in collaboration with its Khadi Institutions (KIs) in Tamil Nadu is purchasing cocoons from cocoon farmers.
The main objectives of KVIC was to help the cocoon farmers struggling to sell their crop due to lock down pandemic outbreak and secondly to ensure continuous supply of Cocoons to the khadi institutions involved in Silk production.
Shedding light on the issue Chairman, KVIC, Vinai Saxena said that “Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that farmers are the backbone of the country. Keeping in mind their welfare, these purchases were not as easy as it looks. As per the procedure in vogue, Silk producing KIs have to purchase silk cocoons from the State Government regulated sericulture markets only. Hence, permission was required from the district administration as well as from sericulture department for the direct purchase from the farmers”. Saxena further said that “as a result of constant efforts and ability to narrate the cocoon farmer’s hardships in front of district administration and before the sericulture department effectively by the KVIC officials in Chennai, the district administration finally granted the permission. Had we not made these purchases now, then the damage to the farmers would have been unbearable”.
The necessity of this deal can be gauged by the fact that reared cocoon must be steamed within five days, or else the larvae would come out of it after cutting the cocoon shell, making the entire crop a complete waste. Cut cocoons cannot be used for reeling the silk yarn. In this sense, these purchases are blessing for the cocoon farmers.
KVIC’s Chennai office in coordination with six Khadi Institutions (KIs) has facilitated the purchase of around 9500 kgs of the cocoon directly from the farmers, worth over Rs 40 lakhs. Six more KIs are likely to get permission soon to purchase 8000 kgs cocoon directly from farmers.