Lucknow's Chikankari industry badly hit by virus lockdown

Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) [India], May 6 (ANI): Lucknow's Chikankari industry has been badly hit due to the lockdown, affecting thousands of artisans.

The industry with annual turnover of Rs 4000 crore plus, employs around one million artisans, weavers and businessmen. While businessmen stare at an uncertain future, artisans dependent on the trade are left struggling.

The establishments in Janpath Hazratganj, Aliganj, Chowk, Kaiserbagh, Akbari Gate and Hussainganj areas in Lucknow that cater to world markets now look deserted.

"Since the lockdown was imposed, work has stopped here. The shops are closed and craftsmen have been sent on leave. The government needs to intervene or else it will become difficult to revive it," said Dilip, owner of a Chikankari center.

Another businessmen and trader Vinod Punjabi also expressed similar concern on how the industry is crawling under financial losses. "We took stock of how poor men and women only dependent on this industry are surviving in these harrowing times," he said.

"The coronavirus pandemic and the following lockdown has come as the biggest challenge in its history so far. Now as the nation looks towards reviving industries, and PM emphasizes both on lives and livelihood, it is time for the government to pay special attention to it," added Punjabi.

"We haven't got our dues, it's a tough work that we do. It takes a week to craft one piece. Now we are left with no money. Meeting the ends has become difficult. We hope when this lockdown ends, we will get our jobs back," said Arti, one of the artisans. (ANI)