The geographical condition, ethnicity and historical connection in N.E. Region determine the economic, social and cultural activities of the region, which presents a colourful and complex picture of the different tribes living in unison and harmony. Handloom gives an insight into the way of life of the people with its myriad of colour and contour, its myriad motifs and designs mostly geo-osmorphic, zoomorphic, floral and sometimes geometric.
The entire states of North-Eastern Region have always a rich tradition of handloom weaving. Handloom weaving is in fact, the symbol of the largest and oldest cottage industry of the region and there is hardly any village with no loom. Weaving has been descending from generation to generation through the pathways of centuries of old history. It is known for its rich textures and individual identical designs. In rural areas of the states, almost in every household there is a primitive foot loom or a handloom for weaving. For the people of N.E. States, weaving is not just a commercial venture, but also a symbol of love and affection. Essentially a female craft, where it is customary for the girls to learn the art of weaving. Handloom weaving is characterized by its distinctiveness and although most of the products are of purely utility purpose some of them are used for certain occasion are of beauty, durable quality, delicate weave, dainty design and delightful colours. The colour and design sense varies from weavers to weavers, tribes to tribes and community to community. The raw materials used in the industry of this region are mainly Muga or golden silk, paat or mulberry silk, Eri or Endi silk which is also known as Non-violence silk.
The handloom industry which is the biggest and most important industry in India is highly labour intensive and very important supplier of handloom and textiles. The rapidly expanding exports and domestic market have created a demand for professionally trained man power required by the handloom industry.
Prior to establishment of IIHT, Guwahati, the students from N.E. Region were approached to IIHT, Varanasi or IIHT, Salem. However, In order to cater the demands of these progressive times, the Development Commissioner for Handlooms, Ministry of Textiles spread its wings by setting up of this Institute in the gateway of North East (Assam, Guwahati) for the ethnic development of handlooms and for common interest of students, artisans and weavers of the region. INDIAN INSTITUTE OF HANDLOOM TECHNOLOGY, GUWAHATI (ASSAM) was established in September 1982 in order to cater to the needs of seven sisters States of N.E. Region including Sikkim.
INDIAN INSTITUTE OF HANDLOOM TECHNOLOGY, GUWAHATI (ASSAM) approved by AICTE conducts six semesters Diploma Course in Handloom & Textile Technology for the candidates belongs to N.E. Region including Sikkim, commences every year in the month of July with an intake of 50 seats. The course is open to all with a priority to the candidates of weavers’ family. The course is one of the lowest expenditure courses and job oriented in different handloom and textile organizations in the country.
With Thanks & Regards
P. Vasu, Director (Institute)