Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) Wednesday launched India’s first-ever high quality Khadi Fabric Footwear in New Delhi. These footwear are made of Khadi fabrics like silk, cotton and wool.
Launching the footwear through a video conference, Nitin Gadkari, Union Minister for Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises (MSME), heaped praises on Khadi footwear saying such unique products had high potential of capturing the international market. At the same time, he said, Khadi fabric footwear would create additional employment and higher income for artisans.
“Khadi footwear is a unique product. International quality and use of fine fabric like Patola silk, Banarasi silk, cotton, denim would attract the youngsters who can purchase it online. These footwear are cost-effective,” Gadkari said while also urging the KVIC to develop alternatives to leather accessories like ladies’ handbags, purses, wallets in handcrafted Khadi fabric which have a huge potential in foreign markets. “By developing and marketing such products overseas, Khadi India can capture a market worth Rs 5,000 crore,” the MSME Minister said.
Minister of State for MSME, Pratap Chandra Sarangi said, the Khadi fabric footwear was not only environment-friendly and skin-friendly but it reflected the hard-work of Khadi artisans that had been put in to make fabric for these footwear. “I congratulate KVIC for developing Khadi fabric footwear according to the global taste. I am sure by occupying a major share in the footwear industry, Khadi fabric footwear will help in reviving the country’s economy,” Sarangi said.
To begin with, the footwear have been launched in 15 designs for ladies and 10 designs for men. Exquisite Khadi products like Patola silk of Gujarat, Banarasi Silk, Madhubani-printed silk of Bihar, Khadi denim, Tussar silk, Matka – Katia silk, a variety of cotton fabric, Tweed wool and Khadi poly-vastra have been used to make these footwear unique and trendy. Available in a wide range of designs, colours and prints, these footwear have been designed to suit clothing for all purposes – formal, casual and festive occasions. The Khadi footwear price ranges from Rs 1,100 to Rs 3,300 per pair.
On the occasion, Vinai Kumar Saxena, Chairman, Khadi and Village Industries Commission said, venturing into new segments, tapping new markets and diversifying the product range, have been the mantra for Khadi’s stupendous success in the last six years.
“The idea behind launching Khadi Fabric Footwear was to tap the international market where a large section of international consumers are increasingly going vegan and hence, Khadi will become a preferred choice of this segment. Khadi fabric footwear is a small step for people, but it will be a giant leap for Khadi artisans. Using fine fabric like cotton, silk and wool in footwear will lead to higher production of fabric by artisans as well as increase in its consumption. This will ultimately create additional employment and higher income for Khadi artisans,” Saxena said.
The size of Indian footwear industry is approximately Rs 50,000 crore which includes exports worth nearly Rs 18,000 crore. Saxena said our initial target was to capture at least 2 percent of this Industry that is estimated to be around Rs 1,000 crore.
Earlier, KVIC had successfully launched its first-ever Khadi wrist watch in association with Titan which has been a trend-setter.