Payyannur: The Payyannur Khadi Centre is facing a crisis with unsold goods worth Rs 25 crore piling up in its godowns. Meanwhile, 13 of the 73 spinning units have been closed down. The workers have not yet received the salary for October.
The spinning units were shut as sliver was not available. In the coming days, more units may have to be shut. An amount of Rs 6.50 crore is due to be paid for Ettakudukka cotton processing centre which supplies the sliver. This has led to crisis at the Ettakudukka centre too.
Normally, workers receive their salary before the tenth of every month. But the amount of Rs 40 lakh needed for the purpose has not been received from sales. Matters were made worse as a deficit of Rs 5 crore was witnessed in Onam sales. The income from the rebate sales held last month was also lesser than last time. That the state government did not purchase khadi material was another setback.
The government had issued a directive asking schools to insist on khadi uniforms on one day a week to promote khadi and handloom. However, Payyannur Khadi did not receive even a single school uniform order. This has led to piling up of school uniforms in the inventory. Khadi bedsheets are used in hospitals and government institutions, but the authorities have stopped purchase now.
Around 3000 workers are employed at 73 spinning units and 64 weaving units. As sufficient yarn is available, weaving units do not face the threat of closure.
The state government had, in August, issued an order to increase the wages of the workers. A similar order was issued by the Khadi Commission also. But with even their jobs at stake, the workers are in no position to demand a wage hike.