GUWAHATI, Sept 25 - Chandan Keshav, secretary of the Boko Resom Gram, which is a large traditional silk producers’ organisation of the State, has urged the authorities concerned to make a renewed effort to secure the Geographical Indication (GI) rights for the State’s naturally worm silk Eri yarn and its products. The first attempt at securing the GI rights for Eri failed due to some technical flaws, Keshav, also a registered GI user of the golden silk yarn Muga, said.
The process for producing Eri yarn in Assam is unique and it is linked with the cultural heritage of the indigenous peoples of the State, which is thousands of year-old. The clothes produced from Eri yarn are also quite different from other parts of the country and in no other place of the globe, except Assam, such clothes – Barkapor, Khania Chadar etc,. – is woven applying the technique and tools used by the peoples of the State.
Significantly, in the entire process of producing such clothes, women play the overwhelmingly dominant roles and the unique climatic condition of the State also plays a major role in matters of producing the quality Eri clothes, Keshav said.
The Eri culture of the State also reflects the collective life of its rural women. And this culture resulted in the establishment of the first women’s market of the State at Palasbari in 1952-’53. Later on, following the massive erosion of the Brahmaputra, the market was shifted to Chaygaon. Only two male helpers were employed by the women traders of this market.
Armed with all these information, the State can once again file its petition for GI rights for Eri, said Keshav.
Muga GI users: Keshav, also a registered Muga GI user, has made an appeal to the people not to be misled by the unscrupulous traders, who are selling fake Muga clothes as genuine ones. These traders are selling clothes made of Tasor, a low quality silk, as Muga clothes. They are also selling synthetic clothes, and Kecha Muga clothes as genuine Muga clothes. To avoid legal actions, they are not getting themselves registered as Muga GI users, said Keshav.