NEDFi imparts training to NE artisans on water hyacinth

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Agartala, Aug 25 (UNI) The North Eastern Development Finance Corporation Ltd (NEDFi) has organised a 20-day training programme for artisans from the Northeastern region for imparting knowledge on how to make handicraft items from water hyacinth.

NEDFi officials said here today that altogether 21 artisans from Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Nagaland and Tripura participated in the training sessions held between August 1-20 on non-conventional handicraft resources in Kamrup of Assam.

NEDFi Chairman-cum-Managing Director K N Hazarika told UNI that making handicrafts from water hyacinth was a new concept, adding that countries like Thailand, Malaysia and China had been displaying their potential in this regard.

''It has a niche market because it is a natural fibre, '' he added.

He also informed that though the Northeastern states had abundant supply of the plants proliferating in ponds and other low-lying water bodies, little knowledge about processing the natural resources was impeding proper utilisation.

The training programme aimed at helping people start a new cottage industry with a small investment, since the raw materials were in abundance in the region, Mr Hazarika stated.

The participant artisans were taught how to collect, dry and process water hyacinths, along with making different frames, he said, adding that a few ''outstanding artisans'' among the trainees would be sponsored by the NEDFi to take part in the Indian Handicraft and Gift Fair slated for October 2008 and February 2009 in Noida.

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