Rs 3,521 cr loan of handloom weavers waived:Govt

New Delhi: The government has waived about Rs 3,521 crore loan of handloom weavers in the country to help revive the sector, Minister of State for Textiles Panabaka Lakshmi told Rajya Sabha today. She said during Question Hour that the loan waiver is one of the components of the scheme of `Revival, Reform and Restructuring Package for Handloom Sector.`

"This initiative is likely to benefit 15,000 handloom weaver`s cooperative societies and approximately 3 lakh individual handloom weavers across the country," she said. Kerala tops the list with Rs 557.16 crore loan waiver, followed by Tamil Nadu with Rs 548.35 crore, Andhra Pradesh Rs 506.64 crore and West Bengal Rs 420.66 crore.

"The amount is tentative, and the scheme is essentially demand-driven, that is all eligible weaver cooperative societies, and individual weavers who fulfil the criteria will have their overdue loans and interest waived," she said.

Tbe minister said all viable and potential viable primary weavers` cooperative societies and state level apex societies would be benefited under the scheme. In addition, the individual handloom weavers, weaver entrepreneurs, self help groups and joint liability groups which have taken loans for handloom weaving purposes would also be covered, she said.