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Grampashilpi Prokosta focusses on Rural Artisans

Grama Shilpi Udyami Prakoshta

It is an acknowledged fact that India is home to the finest arts and artistic heritage right from the ancient times, as people are deeply entrenched in cultural and traditional values. Every village is home to some unique artistic expression like toys, pottery, paintings, brass works, silk weaving, et al… which are geographically indexed, recognised and valued since ages. The art forms are usually passed on by the elders to the next generation and that gets carried forward seamlessly by the current folks. However, of late we have experienced that several of our highly valued art forms are gradually vanishing from our village landscape as the new generation is progressively but surely moving away from being engaged in conserving our rich heritage values due to various socio-economic reasons and also strong lack of proper encouragement to keep the art form alive.

In this backdrop, IMS Foundation with the support of Laghu Udyog Bharati-Karnataka under the National banner Grama Shilpi Prakosta has initiated various programmes to support rural based artisans and promotion their products in the state.

Apart from handlooms (Ilkal Sarees, Molakalmur Sarees, Rabakavi-Banahatti Cotton Sarees, Khan Materials, Mahalingapur towels, etc), Karnataka is historically renowned for its exclusive Dharwad - Navalgund Carpets, Kalghatagi wooden art, Ranebennur – Pure Woollen Kambalis (Blankets), Bidar - Silver Filigree, Koppal – Kinnal toys, Channapatna wooden toys, etc.

In association with IMS Foundation, LUB-K has been hosting various programmes at these GI indexed regions and rope in the NexGen also to get actively involved in keep this art alive.

Karnataka is traditionally renowned for its woven handloom and handicraft eco-friendly products. Each district of Karnataka manufactures an exclusive hand-crafted article using locally available and natural resources not only to cater to the local needs but also to decorate interiors and exteriors for the masses.

A few on-going activities under Gram Shilpi Prakosta include
  • Skill upgradation to existing artisans and training to new generation artisans.
  • Diversifying the artisan products to meet the customer and market demand with eco-friendly concept.
  • Empowering the artisans with advance and entrepreneurial skills.
  • Providing vast exposure in the related fields including the raw material availability and procurement.
  • Developing supply and market chain linkages and e-market platforms.
  • Creating clusters and tourist spots in villages to provide more employment at rural area
  • Developing a centre of excellence exclusively for handloom and handicrafts at Karnataka North (Hubballi) to develop global level artisans with excellent built-in structures for showcasing the creative and skilful art.
  • Even looking for the great financial support to meet the targets.

Some of the sectors actively being explored by LUB-K
  • Wood carvings and products
  • Stone and metal carvings and products
  • Mud products
  • Handloom and handicraft products
  • Herbal and cow products
  • Homemade food products
  • Leather products
  • Traditional games for overall development
  • Focus on Rural-based Products and Services
  • Promotion of Rural Artisans thru Capacity Building and Marketing Facilities
  • Encouraging them to showcase products and services thru Exhibitions and Trade Fairs
  • Issue of Certificates to Master Artisans from Government of India

IMS Foundation’s Role in Allied Sectors

Agriculture Sector

Agriculture is the primary source of livelihood for more than half of Indian population. Gross Value Added by agriculture, forestry, and fishing was estimated at Rs. 19.48 lakh crore in FY20.

India is blessed with large cultivable land with 15 agro-climatic zones as defined by ICAR, having almost all types of weather conditions, soil types and capable of growing a variety of crops. Future of agriculture is a very important question for the planners and all other stakeholders.

Government and other organisations are trying to address the key challenges of agriculture in India, including small holdings of farmers, primary and secondary processing, supply chains, infrastructure supporting the efficient use of resources and marketing, reducing intermediaries in the market. There is a need to work on cost-effective technologies with environmental protection and on preserving our natural resources.

India is expected to achieve the ambitious goal of doubling its farm income by 2022. The agriculture sector in India is expected to generate better momentum in the next few years due to increased investment in agricultural infrastructure such as irrigation facilities, warehousing and cold storage.

Furthermore, other than organic farming, the increasing use of genetically modified crops would likely improve the yield of farmers.


Making healthcare innovative in its affordability and accessibility, a biggest challenge world continues to face. Coupled with access to information and technology, improvement in healthcare policies and re-organizing healthcare delivery systems to address basic aspects like cleanliness and hygiene in achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC).

Further, through social entrepreneurship, access and traction to healthcare insurance, financing of healthcare services, building healthcare repositories and adoption of innovative business models to tackle healthcare needs. Again, skilling or developing healthcare resources is the biggest challenge as well as an opportunity worldwide. In addition, promoting strategic partnerships amongst pharmaceutical establishments and framing proper regulations and monitoring of compliance across pharma industries, etc. is equally necessary.

India’s healthcare industry is a panacea of sorts and a whole lot of factors provide a strong foothold for more investment in the sector in the years ahead. The transaction value of investment has jumped to over 13.5 times. This has already strengthened the country’s perception as an attractive investment destination. The future looks bright and the well-being of India’s people is somewhat secured. In this backdrop, the country’s progress will hinge on its healthcare sector which is witnessing a significant traction across all frontiers.

IMS Foundation: Initiatives on Agriculture and Healthcare

Project – 1 – Alokik Khadya, Aatmanirbhar Gaon,Atmanirbhar Kisan

In India, more than half the population resides in rural areas where the cow is the major cattle and generates 9-15 kg dung/day. Although cow dung is being utilized in multiple ways in villages for plastering of walls, cooking, mosquito repellent, etc., cow dung can be utilized to produce biogas and manure.

India is an ideal environment for Biomass production given its tropical location and abundant sunshine and rains. The country's vast agricultural potential provides huge agro-residues that can be used to meet energy needs, both in heat and power applications. According to IREDA "Biomass is capable of supplementing the coal to the tune of about 260 million tonnes", "saving of about Rs. 250 billion, every year."

IMS Foundation along with Madhurima Foundation has the vision to set up a biogas plant and functionalize it in a way that the village becomes self-sufficient in terms of energy and manure. The major player will be cow dung and the plant which will ensure the development of the village and enhance their standard of living. The project is targeted towards –

  • Setting up a biogas plant with multiple outputs
  • Mechanism to make the village self-reliant and self-sustainable in terms of energy and manure

Project 2 – Health at your doorstep/Diabetes-free India/ Mobile Clinic

Although the government has introduced multiple health programs, National Health Mission, and established around 29,000 PHCs in the country, however, majority of PHCs lack manpower and infrastructure. There are areas beyond the reach of these programs and people do not have access to basic health infrastructure and services.

Diabetes, and visual impairment (commonly known as blindness) are diseases that need attention and care in India.

Accordingly, IMS Foundation in collaboration with Madhurima Foundation has initiated the program for doorstep health screening of basic health parameters with special focus on Diabetes and visual impairment. The project is aimed to –

  • Improvement in health by screening and blood tests followed by prescriptions and delivery of medicines
  • Strengthening the healthcare system by providing relevant data and referring the high-risk cases to the concerned PHCs, district hospitals, and state hospitals, as the case may be.
  • Enhancing accessibility to the citizens for healthcare services by reaching out to them
  • Support people to be organized in terms of their medical records
  • Support in identifying the cause, precautions to be taken and treatment required for the diseases.
  • Enhance knowledge and nutritional level among children and pregnant women

Clinic on Wheels

Similarly, IMS Foundation has started another initiative to support healthcare system in rural regions called Clinic on Wheels.

Project 3 – Health Awareness project – Health Coach

The pandemic has taught us the importance of healthcare awareness and the deficiency that exist in our health ecosystem. Health literacy is critical for the empowerment of communities and the growth of the country as a whole. In India, at least nine out of 10 adults suffer from low health literacy which increases the cost of emergency and hospitalization. Thus, it is important that people are educated on various health aspects.

IMS Foundation and Madhurima Foundation are coming up with a health awareness initiative named “Health Coach” in order to rejuvenate the health system by making every citizen health literate. The project will be focused towards –

  • Providing knowledge and understanding of basic health parameters that empower the community to make informed health decisions.
  • Support in acknowledging and addressing mental health issues as common health issues
  • Awareness and understanding of the importance of hygiene for the community and personal hygiene of individuals. This will also support the “Swachh Bharat” initiative of the Government of India.
  • Establishing a preventive approach towards health among citizens leading to reduced emergency cases and higher productivity.