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Debal Banerjee, Founder of Handloom Foundation

India, April 27: In an era influenced by modernism and minimalism, it’s hard to find a culture that stays true to its roots. The Indian heritage has been always faithful and deep-rooted in its richness and craftsmanship. The handloom industry served for centuries, passing down skills from generation to generation till today. The Indian handloom is the prime player in the global textile sector which has prospects to produce sustainable textiles in every possible manner.

In the current scenario, the industry is facing multifarious problems that some other industries did not face. Counterfeit products have flooded the market and are sold as handlooms. The fake products are neither made out of natural fibre nor handwoven. The quality is getting worse with the usage of toxic material, They sell the fake products expensively in the market and claim them as handloom and natural fibre.

The industry has been a major source of livelihood for millions of people and contributes a significant part to employment. In earlier times, almost every village had its own weavers who made all the clothing requirements needed by the villagers: sarees, dhotis, clothing fabrics, towels, bedsheets and kerchiefs, scarves etc. entire process of cloth making was self-reliant. Considered to be the second-highest employment generating sector of India, Most of the villages thrived on a handloom.

The livelihood of millions of experienced artisan families is under threat. The originality seems to be fading as anything in the market has been labelled as handloom and sustainable which truly goes against the efforts and legacy of artisans and weavers.

While the cultural significance of handlooms has been on the wane in recent times, they have not yet lost their special charm in the textile market, handloom foundation aims to promote sustainability for a better world. It is a non-profit, voluntary, non-governmental organisation incorporated under the Indian Trusts Act, 1882.

Debal Banerjee, The initiator and the founder of this prestigious Handloom foundation has more than 16 years of ground experience. Who wish to uphold Indian handloom as a sustainable textile option for this planet and also supporting artisan families so that they can continue with the respective craft. Debal is a handloom practitioner and he weaves Jamdani in leisure.  As a textile expert, Debal helped many national and international brands to create a sustainable production ecosystem and supply to get Indian Handloom products responsibly.

Debal Banerjee the founder of Handloom Foundation says ‘I believe someday the world will recognise Indian Handloom as the best possible textile production system to save this planet…but I wish it won’t be too late.’

Handloom Foundation team with its founder has a youtube channel comprising 16.8K subscribers and they are increasing the foundation’s awareness all over the digital platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, youtube, linked. in. The aim is to aware end customers of Indian Handlooms. They often organise workshops to empower craft start-ups and empower them with knowledge and market intelligence. Crowdfunded productions have also been initiated to revive endangered handloom crafts where people can get a rare craft and artisan families are getting work. The foundation also looks after the education and health facilities of children from artisan families.

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