India is very famous for its handicrafts. It’s an important industry in the country and the government takes various measures to protect the industry and the artisans involved in it as India is one of the major suppliers of handicrafts to the world. Indian handicrafts are recognized worldwide and have great historical, cultural and religious significance.
Thanks to the government’s measures to protect and promote the handicraft industry, it has been showing a continuous growth of 20% growth every year. Recently even the private sector has shown interest in protecting and promoting it. This will only promote this growth further. India’s contribution to the world economy through this industry is 1.2%.
Indian handicraft industry is a $100 billion industry worldwide. This is mainly due to the uniqueness of each product and how well it reflects the history, culture, heritage and religion of our country. This helps people who live abroad set their identity within their home or in their workplace by placing such handicraft products.
While there is great demand and promotion for Indian handicrafts in the international market, the promotion of this industry in the national market is very low. Local people still prefer machine produced items as they are cheap which tends to affect the livelihoods of the artisans. It’s our duty to promote the Indian handicraft industry to prevent this art and talent from dying out.
Handicrafts are comparatively more expensive than mass machine produced products as all handicraft items, similar as they might seem, are unique in their own way. This makes each product, small or big, very special as someone has sat with it and put their heart and soul into it.
Handicrafts industry comprises a diversified product portfolio and there is large variety available in market including Metal ware, Wood ware, Hand printed textiles, Embroidered and crocheted goods, Shawls, Carpets, Bamboo products, Zari goods, Imitation jewellery, Paintings, Earthenware, Jute products, Marble Sculpture, Bronze Sculpture, Leather Products etc.
The Indian handicrafts industry is highly labor intensive, cottage based and decentralized. The industry is spread all over the country mainly in rural and urban areas. Most of the manufacturing units are located in rural and small towns, and there is huge market potential in all Indian cities and abroad. Handicraft industry is a major source of income for rural communities employing over six million artisans including a large number of women and people belonging to the weaker sections of the society.
Low capital investment, cheap and skilled labor, diversified product portfolio, flexible production are few important features of Indian Handicraft Industry. However, lack of infrastructure & technological support, lack of awareness of international and new trends and poor promotional campaigns are a few obstructions in the path of its full-fledged development. The Indian Handicraft Industry enjoys a unique place among all other industries because it represents the rich culture, tradition and heritage of India. India’s rich cultural diversity and heritage provides a unique and huge resource for developing craft products. It is one of the most important segments of decentralized sector in India. Now it is in our hands to pick handicrafts over machine produced products to help our artisans and the handicraft industry grow and prosper.