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Textiles, handicraft from Bihar and Jharkhand have sought for a GI tag in Chennai

By Sangeetha Kandavel

Applications seeking Geographical Indication (GI) tag for a slew of products from Jharkhand and Bihar have landed at the Geographical Indications Registry office here in Chennai. The applications from Jharkhand are for textile products while the one’s from Bihar are for textiles and handicraft.

The first application was for the Kuchai Silk Saree and Fabrics that was filed by the Sahyogi Mahila, Jharkhand. This particular silk is made from silkworms from Kuchai block of Saraikela Kharsawan district. And the cocoon for this silk grows on Sal and Arjun trees. According to details furnished in the application filed, the history of tussar Kuchai silk can be traced back to the medieval times. Though tussar is now being produced in many parts of the country, Jharkhand is still the primary region of tussar silk production and accounts for approximately 40% of the tussar silk produced in India. The applicants mentioned that the production of Kuchai has helped not only the economy of Jharkhand and also saved livelihood of the local tribes. They also said that there is a huge demand for this silk in the US and EU markets.

The Budhwachak Prathmik Bunkar Sahyog Samiti and the Gramin Vikas Kendra, Jharkhand, have filed papers asking for GI tag for Bhagaiya Saree and Fabrics. Bhagaiya, a village panchayat in Godda district, is known for traditional handloom silk manufacturing and weaving and is also popularly known as Resham Nagar. The weavers here use their hands and legs to weave the saree and fabrics.

An application seeking GI tag for the Nalanda Bawanbuti Saree and Fabrics has also been filed by the Baswan Bigaha Prathmik Bunkar Sahyog Samiti, Bihar under the textiles category. Another application from Bihar has come up asking for GI tag for Gaya Pattharkatti Stone Craft under handicrafts and this was filed by the Aashirvaad Stone Handicraft Producer Company Limited.

A Geographical Indication (GI) is a label that is applied to products that have a specific geographical origin and that have characteristics that are related to that particular location. Upon registration, the producers of the GI product have the exclusive right to use the tag.

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