I have great pleasure in participating in the Golden Jubilee Celebrations of the Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC). On this occasion and on Indiraji's Birthday, I extend my greetings and felicitations to all those associated with the Khadi and Village Industries sector and I wish the Golden Jubilee Celebrations all success.
The freedom struggle gave India its Independence and a promise to the people of India to liberate them from poverty, ignorance and disease; to give them opportunities to improve their lives; and to build a strong and stable nation.
In India, khadi evokes a strong sentiment since it has been associated with our freedom struggle. To give impetus to the freedom movement and as a substitute for materials being imported from Britain, Mahatma Gandhiji chose khadi, which soon became a symbol of the unity of India against the colonial power.
The use of Khadi also conveyed a powerful message that Indians could be self-reliant and live with dignity in the most trying of circumstances. The fabric still remains a tool of economic freedom and a means of livelihood with dignity for many, particularly in the rural areas. Khadi and village industries occupy the most important place in the country's economy after agriculture.
Khadi is a part of our conscience and the symbol of our self-respect and self-reliance. Khadi and village industries are a medium for making the rural economy strong and they have huge potential for creating employment. Therefore, it is necessary for us to give it maximum encouragement. There is a necessity to expand programmes connected with khadi taking into account present requirements.
I once again extend my greetings and felicitations to all members of the "Khadi Parivar" and I wish the Golden Jubilee Celebrations all success.
Khadi is as famous and important as the freedom struggles of India; it has got its own remarkable role in the swadesi movement of Indian freedom struggle, started as to discourage the Indians from wearing of foreign clothes. Its also known by another name 'KHADDAR', made from the instrument known as 'Charkha'. During pre-independence era the movement of khadi manufacturing gained momentum under guidance of Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhiji.
Khadi before independence was considered as the fabric for the political leaders and the rural people. But now it has found its way into the wardrobe of fashion conscious people. The current situation is that the demand is more than the supply. Earlier the type of khadi available was khadi cotton which had very coarse texture and feel. However many varieties of khadi like khadi silk, khadi wool and khadi cotton are available now, which makes it a fashionable fabric and likeable by the masses.
Its concept was developed by Mahatma Gandhi. It was a symbol for political agendas during the fight for independence in India against the British rule. It was primarily a means to provide employment to the unemployed rural population of India at that time. The Indian flag has to be also made from khadi material. Thus it holds national importance -we could even call it the national fabric of India.
Khadi has gained worldwide appreciation as it is hand made, durable, long lasting and organic in nature. The fabric is produced by the masses for the masses. It is associated with Gandhian philosophy as well as makes a fashion statement. Through the medium of khadi weaving, the weaver expresses art and designing by the spindle and loom. It is widely accepted in the Indian fashion circle. Leading fashion designers now include it in their collection by designing clothes with khadi material. There is huge demand of it in international market, especially in western countries.