Those expensive artworks from a renowned showroom in your living room certainly make it look spectacular. Do you know the name of the artisan who generated the idea or toiled to get the work done on time? Usually, you hardly have an idea.
Undoubtedly, it is the sole reason why traditional art is on the verge of extinction. The artisans have been experiencing an extreme level of poverty. The good news is that the days have finally arrived when rural artisans can connect with the world, improve their manufacturing capabilities, and achieve financial stability.
It won’t be an exaggeration to say that, with the help of the SFURTI scheme, the traditional artisans are finding a ray of greater hope. This initiative by MSME, the Ministry of Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises, has brought brighter days for artisans. It works as the coordinating ministry, providing coordination, overall policy, and management support to SFURTI.
SFURTI, known as Scheme of Fund for Regeneration of Traditional Industries, is an MSME initiative to promote Cluster development, which started in 2005. Khadi and Village Industries Commission, known as KVIC, is the nodal agency in charge of promoting the Cluster development for Khadi. On the other hand, the nodal agency for coir-based clusters is Coir Board.
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The scheme has been introduced to improve the traditional artisan industry, make it profitable, help them represent throughout the country, and gain more exposure. With this scheme, artisans from traditional industries are most likely to become financially stable and more employment opportunities and common facility centres are about to start. Bamboo, honey, and khadi are the targeted industries for the SFURTI scheme that works as consistent support for rural entrepreneurs and artisans.
Since the guidelines are revised, SFURTI has been merged with some existing schemes.Those are:
- The Scheme to enhance the competitiveness as well as productiveness of the Khadi industry and its artisans
- PRODIP, a scheme that refers to product development, design intervention, and packaging
- RISC, the Scheme for Rural Industries Service Centre
- Several small interventions include Ready to Wear Missions, Ready Warp Units, etc.
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Know the Objectives of the SFURTI Scheme
- Organising various traditional artisans and industries into clusters aims to promote initiatives, make them more competitive, let them grow financially, and provide long-term sustainability.
- Employment opportunities for rural entrepreneurs and traditional industry artisans
- Enhance the product marketability of clusters with better packaging, design intervention, and improved marketing strategies.
- Train the traditional artisans from the associated clusters with better skills and arrange exposure visits for them
- Allow the provision for improved equipment and shared facilities to be used by the artisans.
- Strengthening the cluster governance systems following stakeholders’ participation to bring out the emerging opportunities and challenges and give a coherent response.
- Gradually build traditional and innovative skills, advanced technologies, market intelligence, and public-private partnership models; the process will help replicate cluster-based traditional Industries.
- Assisting in production and design, taking care of the quality imprisonment of products to ensure quality benchmarks.
- Recognizing potential customers for cluster products and acquiring knowledge about their aspirations, thereby helping in establishing a production line to fulfil requirements.
- Replacing supply-driven sales models with market-driven models and focusing on branding and product pricing to increase sales.
- Working on the strategy to sell out the cluster products on e-Commerce websites.
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Who can apply for SFURTI?
Here is a list of who can obtain the SFURTI scheme in India.
- Non-Government Organisations (NGOs)
- Semi-government institutions
- Central and State Government Institutions
- PRI or Panchayati Raj institutions
- Field functionaries of State and Central Government
How much subsidy can you draw from SFURTI?
Through the SFURTI scheme, you can have financial assistance for up to Rs. 8 crores. With a group of a thousand to two thousand five hundred artisans, the Heritage Clusters can receive up to Rs. 8 crores. The Significant Clusters with five hundred to one thousand artisans will get a maximum of Rs. 3 crores, while the Mini Cluster of five hundred artisans is provided Rs. 1 crore. In the case of North-eastern states or Jammu-Kashmir, a 50% reduction will be there in artisans’ count per cluster.
SFURTI comes up with three different interventions, which are:
- Soft Interventions: When you talk about soft interventions, it comprises general awareness, skill development, participation in seminars, counselling, market promotion initiatives, motivation, capacity building, trust-building, institution development, exposure visits, product development workshops, and training programs and so on.
- Hard Interventions: Hard interventions include multiple facilities to know more about various products and packaging, training centres, RMBs or Raw Material Banks, Common Facility Centres (CFCs), warehousing facilities, and upgradation of tools and technology, production infrastructure, and value addition.
- Thematic Interventions: Thematic interventions work well for various clusters of the same sector, emphasising domestic and international markets. The primary focus of thematic interventions is working with e-Commerce initiatives, brand-building, new media marketing, and promotion campaigns.
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Institutional arrangement for SFURTI
- Scheme Steering Committee (SSC)
- Nodal Agencies (NAS)
- Technical Agencies (TAs)
- Implementing Agencies (IAs)
How to apply for SFURTI
If your organisation seems to be eligible for the SFURTI, you must submit your proposals to the respective KVIC. The state and zonal level officials will go through the proposal before the Steering Committee’s approval.
These days, people look at art, appreciate it, and either purchase it or post a picture on social media. The number of Likes, Loves, and Wows determines the beauty of an artwork. Indeed, social media helps the artwork reach out to more people. However, the artisans mostly remain behind the lenses and fight to survive. SFURTI comes as a saviour and a sigh of relief for them. Life becomes easier when you can show your work to the country with a government scheme; life becomes more manageable.
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