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Soon, Ethnic Manipuri Handloom Designs May Get GI Status

NEW DELHI: After Banarasi sarees and Chikan works of Lucknow, ethnic handloom designs from Manipur may be the next in line to get GI (geographical indication) status.

Three handloom designs and motifs from the northeastern state are vying for the status.

“The designs were identified through a group of academicians, designers and local experts,” says Sriparna B Baruah, head of the Centre for Industrial Extension at the Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE).

“A report has already been submitted to the Manipur government which in turn has taken up the issue at the fora concerned,” Baruah said.

A decision in this regard is expected soon, she says.

GI is an Intellectual Property Right which attributes the quality, reputation or other characteristics of a good to its geographical origin.

Handloom is a rich village industry in most of the northeastern states and plays a significant role in the economy. The handloom products of Manipur consist of various types of designs based on traditional and new motifs, artistic and attractive color combination, which have been able to give a variety to its products range.

The Guwahati-based IIE, under the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, has been working in showcasing products of the northeast in a wider platform.

“Earlier this month, IIE signed a pact with the National Institute of Design (NID) under which the premier design school will provide design expertise to micro, small and medium enterprises in the northeast,” says IIE director K Ahmed.

“The NID will implement one of the design development components of the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises,” he says, adding two of their designers are already in the region to take stock of things.

“What they will be doing is bringing out something innovative without diluting the ethnic character of our products,” Ahmed points out.

(Courtesy: Sify)

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