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Gems Industry Worried At Smuggling, Poor Facilities

AGARTALA, Dec 24: The illegal trade of gemstones and lack of infrastructure marred the prospects of gems and jewellery industries in the northeast India, Gem and Jewellery Export Promotion Council (GJEPC) officials said here Friday.

The GJEPC, a society sponsored by the union ministry of commerce, has urged the state and central governments to take steps to set up infrastructure supportive to the gems and jewellery industries in the northeast, which is surrounded by China, Myanmar, Bhutan, Bangladesh and Nepal.

‘Immediate steps need to be taken to stop the smuggling of fake gemstones from across the international borders,’ GJEPC eastern region director Shantanu Rajguru told reporters.

He added that due to lack of infrastructure, the gems and jewellery industries in the northeast are not flourishing at expected levels though it has huge potential because of the markets, both domestic and foreign.

According to the GJEPC official, setting up hallmarking centers, training centers for workers and commissioning of modern machineries are the basic needs of the industry.

The GJEPC officials were talking to the reporters on the sidelines of concluding ceremony of week-long gemstones identification and grading training program for artisans.

Rupak Saha, GJEPC member and prominent jewellery trader, said that a joint initiative of trade bodies and governments is the immediate need to check the illegal trade.

Senior GJEPC member and gemstones trainer Meenu Brijesh Vyas said that skill development is crucial for the growth of the industry.

(Courtesy: IANS)

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