Bhubaneswar: The Odisha State Co-operative Handicrafts Corporation Limited on Tuesday launched another Raw Material Bank at Pipili, after getting the response from the applique craft Raw Material Bank, Bhubaneswar. It was inaugurated by Agriculture Minister Pradeep Maharathi.

It may be noted that earlier in March, the Development Commissioner had sanctioned Rs 1.56 crore to the Corporation to set up new raw material banks in the State. In the first phase, Rs 78 lakhs was released for the construction of applique craft raw material bank at Pipili.

Sources said over 2,000 applique artisians are working at Pipili, some depend upon the raw material bank in Bhubaneswar while others depend upon local middleman for the primary raw material-dyed cloth.

Managing Director of the Corporation, Jagannath Mohanty said, “the middleman sell inferior quality cloth material to these artisans at cheaper rates which results to colour fade. This has been affecting the markets of applique products at both national and international levels.”

The bank would provide raw materials as well as good quality cloths to artisians at less price than the open market price, added Mr. Mohanty.

As per sources, the functioning of the bank will be governed by a Core Committee that comprises officials from DC Handicrafts, Government of India, and District Industries Centres (DICs) of Puri and Bhubaneswar.