GI status sought for Bhagalpur silk fabrics and sarees

Only one of its kind: Bhagalpur silk fabrics and sareesThe Bhagalpur Regional Handloom Weavers Cooperative Union and six other organisations have filed an application before the Chennai-based Geographical Indication Registry, the competent authority under Government of India, for a GI tag for 'Bhagalpur Silk Fabrics and Sarees'.


The Geographical Indication is a sign used on goods that have a specific geographical origin and possess qualities, reputation or characteristics that are essentially attributable to that region.

Once granted, the GI status would legally prohibit others to sell sarees and fabrics made at places other than Bhagalpur under the same brand.


The GI tag for fabrics and sarees can become an effective tool for economic empowerment of the weaver community.


"The grant of GI tag to Bhagalpur Silk Fabrics and Sarees would certainly help the local weavers from losing their share in the revenue generated through the sale of these products," Dhananjay Kumar, who works as Cluster Development Executive at a local organisation in Bhagalpur, said.

Recently, a similar status was granted to famous Banaras brocades and sarees. In the past, GI tag has been awarded to a number of products or goods, including Darjeeling Tea, Goa Feni and Madhubani Paintings.le Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-parent:""; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman";} @page Section1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.25in 1.0in 1.25in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.Section1 {page:Section1;} -->

 
At present the application for GI tag for Bhagalpur silk fabrics and sarees is in pre-examination stage. A meeting of consultative group of the GI registry is expected next month, which would discuss the application, Kumar said.


The application for GI has been filed under class 24 and 25 of the Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999. Class 24 of the Act deals with textiles and textile goods, bed and table covers while class 25 is for clothing, footwear and headgear.


Bhagalpur, a divisional town in Bihar, is situated on the bank of river Ganga. Thousands of handloom weavers of the area are dependent of the business of silk and related products.


Bhagalpur is well known for its sericulture, manufacture of yarn and weaving them into products. The silk produced here is of a distinct and special type. The local silk is known as 'Tussah' or 'Tusser' silk.



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