Manipur, Aug. 14 : Manipuri households are generally engaged in making handicrafts and handloom products. It has set a tradition that is rapidly becoming a source of income for many craftsmen in the state. Cooperative society in Manipur has been working aggressively to promote handloom by empowering women. The women in Imphal have been creating handloom products since many years. However, their work was streamlined in 2013 after the beginning of a handloom unit by Leima Thrift and Credit Cooperative Society Limited.
The aim of the unit is to safeguard and promote the state's handloom by providing a platform to the artisans.
President of Leima Thrift and Credit Co-Operative Society Limited, Takhellambam Jibonlata said, "The society is initiating in the best way to develop the handloom industry of Manipur and give superior platforms to the craftsmen.
At the same time, we are focusing on how to improve the economy in the society." The society has created employment opportunities for hundreds of women in Manipur.
They fabricate items such as traditional Manipuri wear, cushion covers, dining table mat, Yoga mat, ladies purse and door mats.
The Society is also helping many budding artisans learn traditional weaving and handicrafts. "I am learning how to make a carpet because in Manipur, carpet is used in every other thing. Like we use it for dinner or as a foot mat and also used it for outdoor to sit on," says artisan Nahakpam Devala.
Another artisan Sumati said, "I am happy to be associated with this Society. I am not only learning new techniques and designs but also we can use our own designs and ideas in making the handloom products.
This gives me confidence." There are many such cooperative societies in the state and other parts of Northeast India, who have been working for women empowerment and social and economic upliftment of rural artisans.
The traditional art contributes to the state's economy in a big way..