Bhubaneswar: In a bid to provide livelihood to forest communities, the Odisha government Monday inked a pact with the Central Silk Board for ‘Vanya Silk Programme in Odisha’ at an event organised at the state guest house here, an official said. Sources said the tripartite memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Odisha’s Forest, Environment and Climate Change department, Handlooms, Textiles and Handicrafts (HT&H) department and the Central Silk Board for ‘Vanya Silk Programme in Odisha’ will pave way for implementation of the Odisha Tusser Silk Development Project (O-TSDP) that aims at creating livelihood through tusser sericulture activities.
The proposed five-year project will lead to creation of livelihood for the members of VSS by adopting sericulture farming. Besides, it will create a wider scope for sustainable development and women empowerment along with employment generation through ‘Mission Shakti’ women self-help groups across the state, said an official.
Tusser forestry activities cover the plantation of Asan and Arjuna food plants for the rural, especially, the tribal farmers, it was learnt. Tusser worm rearing and cocoon production will be taken up by the Forest department through VSS in 18 forest divisions of Odisha.
The sericulture wing of HT&H department will provide technical support for tusser favouring host plantation and take up the marketing of tusser cocoon through network of 59 Primary Tusser Rearer Cooperative Societies (PTRCSs) and Serifed. The Central Silk Board will support the programme with funding under Silk Samagra-II for the proposed project.
Forest, Environment and Climate Change department Additional Chief Secretary Mona Sharma was present during the MoU signing.
While state CAMPA CCF (PP&A) and CEO Pradeep Raj Karat represented the Forest department, Textiles and Handloom director Sushanta Dash signed the MoU on behalf of the said department. Central Silk Board Director (Technical) Siva Prasad represented the board, it was learnt.