New Delhi: An innovative step by ministry of textiles will soon provide country's countless handloom weavers to e-market their products at a competitive price.
The Ministry of Textiles on Monday signed a MoU with online retail giant Flipkart to provide an online marketing platform to weavers, reported Economic Times.
Responding to queries raised on choosing a particular company for the agreement, Textiles Secretary S K Panda said, "What we are starting now is only on a pilot basis, nobody is compelled to sell only to a particular agency. Our aim is to eliminate middlemen, assist the master weaver... After a period of 3 to 6 months we will go for bidding."
Textiles Minister Santosh Gangwar, who was present on the occasion, emphasised that the focus of this association should be to help weavers and weaver entrepreneurs to produce products in tune with the buyer requirements and grow them significantly so that they may become manufacturers not only at a local but also at a national level.
"This (MoU) will help us reach out to thousands of weavers across India... Through this initiative we are giving a direct platform to the weavers to reach out to the end-customers. There will be no middlemen. The customer will get access to variety of products across India. Flipkart will help them (weavers) to list on the marketplace," Ankit Nagori, vice president-marketplace at Flipkart, told a news agency.
"We will charge weavers a 3 to 4 per cent commission on sale. There will be no listing charge or any other thing. If a sale happens, then he (customer) will have to pay 3 to 4 per cent commission on that sale. However, we will charge 15 per cent commission from readymade garments suppliers," he added.
"This kind of a coordinated effort has been planned and executed for the first time with Flipkart for handloom weavers which will bridge the missing linkages of market intelligence, market access and logistics and help the Indian weavers in getting remunerative prices for their products," the ministry said.
"We are confident about the success of the programme and in 3 to 6 months' time we would like to expand the programme. For this initiative the first event is in September in Varanasi where we will invite weavers. Textiles Ministry will help us reach out to the weavers," Nagori said.
The weavers are expected to immensely benefit from the scheme. As Flipkart, with a massive infrastructure support across the country, will help the weavers make optimum use of the available data to help the seller maximise its profit.
The online retail giant will help in deciding the right selling price, payment automation, proper packaging, transportation and also brand building. This is not the first time that Flipkart has decided to join hands with government. Earlier, the company had signed another MoU to train as many as 5,000 students by December this year.