Closure of the work
As happened to other small scale business sectors, entrepreneurial activities of the rural women GBS working with i.e. weaving durry (cotton mats) and embroidery was entirely turned off due to lockdown. As the wedding ceremonies banned throughout the country, all the orders of embroidery work were cancelled by the shopkeepers and hence the women became completely jobless in village Pawata and the neighborhood. Likewise export of cotton mats was stopped as there was no order from Europe, America or Australia. Therefore, the women weavers of cotton mats became jobless for almost 2-3 months.
Women artisans placing warp and weft of durry (Left) and showing samples (Right)
It was very crucial period for the entrepreneurial women and their family who were dependent on their handicraft works only. In such a situation GBS kept continue to supply them food grains with support from the Government and some other private donors as well. The Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM) of the area issued a curfew pass to GBS in the name of Kusum Lata Jain and Sarita Yogi who kept moving to reach the community people in the villages.
Women artisans initiating embroidery on a saree in village Pawata after a long gap
Now, as the Government has allowed wedding ceremonies restricting the gathering of maximum 50 people, very little work of embroidery has started in village Pawata. GBS contacted the wholesalers of embroidered sarees and suits etc. in the city to provide jobs to the women entrepreneurs and a few have given small orders for embroidery work on sarees. Also, the cotton mat weaving unit at Koliyon ki dhaani has got few orders on GBS persuasion to some of the local exporters. It will take couple of months in building the momentum for boosting the market and it will keep moving slowly till then.