If the government's plan materialises, the crumbling and neglected infrastructure in Bhiwandi would be upgraded. In a boost for the mega powerloom cluster in Bhiwandi, the textile department has initiated steps for setting up a logistics centre in the cluster, on 150 acres of land.
District information officer Aniruddha Ashtaputre said, "The textile department will need at least 150 acre land, with good connectivity to the upcoming Mumbai-Nagpur Samruddhi Corridor, Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust and Delhi-Mumbai Freight Corridor to boost business to be set up in the cluster."
The cluster, claimed the department, will ensure that the Bhiwandi looms do not have to depend on exploitative middlemen for raw materials and to export finished goods.
Apart from creating local employment, the logistics hub will bring about planned development in Bhiwandi with better roads, education and transport facilities. The Comprehensive Powerloom Cluster Development Scheme was first proposed by the central government for Bhiwandi in November 2008. The detailed project report was approved in March 2009.
However, the project could not be implemented due to several constraints under the Comprehensive Powerloom Cluster Development Scheme. The idea was refloated last year when Textiles Minister Smriti Irani inaugurated the PowerTex India Schemes in 43 cities through video-conferencing in Bhiwandi.
A meeting with the secretary of the state textile department, Atul Patane, district collector Rajesh Narvekar and other stakeholders was held recently to take the project ahead. The cluster will have a common facility centre, powerloom processing unit, yarn market, workshop spaces and skill development centres.
Patane said the project should be implemented by making MIDC the special purpose vehicle. "The MIDC authorities will be responsible for coordinating between electricity board, pollution department, municipal corporation and revenue department among others. A special cell to encourage export of textiles from Bhiwandi will be formed under the district collector," Ashtaputre added.