AFTER Independence the newly elected government chose the road to industrialisation. This emphasis on industry and development further aggravated the damage to the crafts community caused by 200 years of colonial rule. However, after Gandhiji’s death, several of his followers initiated and nurtured government schemes and programmes to protect the welfare of the crafts community in India.
The Central and State Governments recognised that handicrafts, with its labour-intensive character and wide dispersal through the length and breadth of the country, constitutes a crucial economic activity. It would, if supported, bring wealth to the country through trade and exports. The objective of government schemes was to provide economic and social benefits to the craftsmen of the country and to promote their work in domestic and foreign markets.
The four major goals of the handicrafts development programmes run by the government were
1. Promotion of handicrafts;
2. Research and design development;
3. Technical development;
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