Sometimes these lanes were buzzing with the thunder of machines. The sound of a machine used to come from every house. Machines are still running in the weavers’ locality in Tanti Bazar, Bhagalpur, but there is no noise. Now in every house, the sound of machines is being heard from one and two houses. The weavers, who were once busy with their work throughout the day, now sit at their doors waiting for work. He sees a ray of hope in everyone who comes from outside.
This is because the lockdown has devastated the weavers. They no longer have work. When the team of Navbharat Times.com reached Tanti Bazar area in Bhagalpur city, the weavers shared their pain. Weavers said that due to no work, our people are now selling fish. Because the stomach has to be filled. Government and local representatives take no care of us. The demand for silk made in Bhagalpur is not only in the country but also abroad. But due to not being branded at the government level, we are feeling neglected.
Half of wages
The weavers have suffered a severe setback. After unlocking, the demand for silk clothes has increased but the pace is not there. In such a situation, the wages of the weavers have also been halved. A laborer living in Tanti Bazar said that earlier we used to get Rs 10 per meter on picking cloth. Now Mahajan says that there is no demand in lockdown. In such a situation, you have to work at half the wages. Now they give Rs 5 per meter. A laborer weaves 20-25 meters of cloth in a day. In such a situation, earning 100-150 rupees is made every day.
Seth’s earnings in lakhs
Knijaht Ansari, chairman of the weavers’ struggle committee, said that the company owner spends up to 1 thousand in preparing a silk sari. But when these saris go on sale in showrooms, they are sold for 4-5 thousand rupees. In this case, Seth people earn millions. But see the condition of the weavers. What’s today. People are embracing death. Leaving his job.
Government help is not available
A number of promises have been made at the government level to promote handloom. But it has not been implemented. Weavers of Bhagalpur had also met CM Nitish Kumar regarding their demands. He promised a waiver of electricity. But only a few people have benefited from this. There is a lot of resentment among the weavers about their present condition.
Will vote on development
On the question of votes, the chairman of the weavers struggle committee, Nizhat Ansari said that weavers have got some relief due to online business. Now women from many other cities are taking clothes from the weavers of Bhagalpur. Otherwise, this weaver would have been devastated. We are citizens of this India. But governments now talk of Hindu-Muslim. We demand that we talk about development and make plans for the weavers. So that India can become number one again.
Significantly, during the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, PM Modi addressed an election rally in Bhagalpur. During this time the PM had said that the mega cluster formed in Bhagalpur will benefit the weavers here. Now the weavers are being provided here with a drilling machine, this will help the people a lot. But the condition of the weavers has not changed. The weavers of Bhagalpur are unable to open anything about the vote.