An illiterate woman, who provides employment to 1000 girls in South Kashmir

Srinagar Aug 22: Amid rising unemployment, a 55-year-old woman from South Kashmir’s Kulgam district has been providing employment to over 1000 girls.

Her name is Zamruda Bano, who has set up over 200 centres where around 1000 women work and make their earnings. In these centres, these women do crewel embroidery, chain stitching with a special hooked needle locally called Ari on the fabric, making cushion covers, curtains, and bed sheets.

Zamrudu is an illiterate woman from Kulgam and is mother of two children. However, that has not deterred her from setting up these centres and providing employment to over 1000 women.

“I also provide training to girls to learn these skills. Once they get trained, they start doing works of crewel embroidery, chain stitching, making cushion covers, bed sheets and curtains. We then sell these things in and outside Kashmir,” she told news agency Kashmir Indepth News Service (KINS).

She has been earning over Rs 10 lakh monthly and provides remuneration to these girls.

She has been associated with this art since childhood. Everyday many women come to her to learn about the crafts. Even doing Covid restrictions, her works were going smoothly.

“My main aim is to provide employment to girls. There are thousands of girls sitting idle at homes. I started setting up centres since 1990 and thousands of girls have been trained in them over the years,” Zamruda said.

In each centre 10-15 girls work jointly. “Each girl earns Rs 4000-7000 monthly based on the work they do,” she said.

One of the girls working in one of Zamruda’s centres said she was sitting idle after passing 10th class. “My family could not afford to send me for higher studies due to financial constraints. Then I got to know about the centre in 2017. I learned how to make crewel cushions for a few months. Now I earn over Rs 5000 per month,” she said, who is from Kulgam district.

Like other parts of the country, there is rising unemployment in Jammu and Kashmir. The Government of India’s Ministry of Statistics and Programme implementation published its latest Periodic Labour Force Survey stating that unemployment figures among educated youth in J&K has reached 46.3 percent, second highest in India. (KINS)