GOVT commits promotion of agarbatti scheme for generation of employment

INDIA is launching a nationwide scheme under the Atmanirbhar Bharat program to make the country self-sufficient in Agarbatti production using indigenous materials. Khadi and Village Industries Commission has finalised a scheme which will be implemented through PPP mode. A two-party agreement to this effect will be signed between KVIC and the private agarbatti manufacturers for the successful running of the project. The current consumption of agarbatti in the country is about 1,490 MT per day compared to daily production estimated at 760 MT. The deficit is met through imports primarily from China and Vietnam at a huge cost of forex outgo and keeping indigenous artisans unemployed. Confirming the scheme approved by the Ministry for Road Transport & Highways,  Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises headed by Nitin Gadkari, KVIC Chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena said that “100 percent of the machines used in the production of agarbattis were being imported from Vietnam”. Under the scheme, KVIC has decided to procure only locally-made machines by Indian manufacturers to encourage local production. KVIC will provide automatic agarbatti making machines and powder mixing machines to artisans through successful private agarbatti manufacturers who will sign agreements as business partners. The Commission will provide a 25 percent subsidy on the cost of the machines and recover the remaining 75 percent of the cost from the artisans in easy installments every month. The business partner will provide raw material to artisans for making agarbatti and pay them wages on a job work basis. Saxena said the pilot project for the programme will begin this month. “Supply of raw material to the artisans, logistics, quality control and marketing of the final product will be the sole responsibility of the business partner. After recovery of the 75 percent cost, the ownership of the machines will automatically be transferred to the artisans,” the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises  Ministry said. The cost of artisans’ training will be shared between KVIC and the private business partner and KVIC will bear 75 percent of the cost while 25 percent will be paid by the business partner. Agarbatti or incense sticks are mainly used for religious purposes by all  Indian communities. It is used for the celebration of auspicious ceremonies. When burned, they release the aroma and create an auspicious environment around. Picture courtesy: renting online.com.sg 

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