Khadi Agarbatti Aatmanirbhar Mission (KAAM): Union Minister for MSME Nitin Gadkari has approved a unique employment generation program proposed by Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) to make India Aatmanirbhar in Agarbatti production, Ministry of Micro,Small & Medium Enterprises said in a statement today. Named as Khadi Agarbatti Aatmanirbhar Mission (KAAM), the programme aims to create jobs for unemployed and migrant workers across the country while increasing domestic Agarbatti production substantially.
KVIC had submitted the for KAAM to the Ministry of MSME for approval in July. Soon, a pilot project will be launched soon and on full-fledged implementation of the project, thousands of jobs will be created in the Agarbatti industry, the statement said.
Khadi Agarbatti Aatmanirbhar Mission: Scheme details
According to the MSME ministry’s statement, KVIC has designed the KAAM scheme on PPP mode. It would require very less investment to create sustainable employment. The scheme will also help private Agarbatti manufacturers to scale up Agarbatti production without any capital investment by them.
As part of the scheme, KVIC will provide Automatic Agarbatti making machines and powder mixing machines to the artisans through private Agarbatti manufacturers who will sign the agreement as business partners. It has been decided to procure only locally made machines by Indian manufacturers under the scheme.
KVIC will provide 25 per cent subsidy on the cost of the machines. It will recover the remaining 75 per cent of cost from the artisans in easy installments every month.
The raw material for agarbatti production will be provided to the artisans by the business partners. They will pay the workers wages on job work basis. Also, the cost of artisans’ training will be shared between KVIC and the private business partner. For training the artisans, KVIC will bear 75 per cent of the cost while 25 per cent would be paid by the business partner.
According to the MSME ministry’s statement, each automatic Agarbatti making machine can make about 80 kg Agarbatti per day and provide direct employment to four persons. A powder mixing machine will be provided on a set of five Agarbatti making machines, providing employment to two persons.
Expected earnings from KAAM
At the current job work rate, one can get Rs 15 per kg for Agarbatti making. Thus, four artisans working on an Automatic Agarbatti machine may earn a minimum of Rs 1200 per day by making 80 kg of Agarbatti, which means every artisan will earn at least Rs 300 per day. Also, on the powder mixing machine, every artisan will get a fixed amount of Rs 250 per day.
Under the KAAM scheme, wages of the artisans would be provided by the business partners on a weekly basis directly in their accounts through DBT only. The supply of raw material to the artisans, logistics, quality control and marketing of the final product will be the sole responsibility of the business partner.
The ownership of the machines will automatically be transferred to the artisans after recovery of the 75% cost. For this, a two-party agreement will be signed between KVIC and the Private Agarbatti manufacturer.
The announcement of KAAM scheme comes in the wake of the Central government’s decisions to restrict the import of Raw Agarbatti and increase the import duty on Bamboo sticks.
Commenting on the initiative, KVIC Chairman Shri Vinai Kumar Saxena said that the twin decisions of the Central Government had created a huge employment opportunity in the Agarbatti industry. “In order to encash the huge employment generation opportunity, the KVIC designed a program namely “Khadi Agarbatti Aatmanirbhar Mission” and submitted to the Ministry of MSME for approval,” Saxena was quoted as saying in the statement.
At present, the total daily consumption of Agarbatti in the country is approximately 1490 MT per day. However, currently, India produces just 760 MT of Agarbatti daily.