USTAAD Scheme for Traditional Artisans in Varanasi – USTAAD Scheme for Traditional Artisans in Varanasi

USTAAD Scheme for Traditional Artisans in Varanasi

Union Government formally launched Upgrading the Skills and Training in Traditional Arts/Crafts for Development (USTAAD) Scheme.

It was launched by Union Minister of Minority Affairs Dr. Najma Heptullah in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh in order to improve degrading conditions of world famous Banaras Saree weavers who belong to minority communities.

Facts about USTAAD Scheme

  • The Scheme aims at upgrading Skills and Training of minority communities by preservation of traditional ancestral Arts and Crafts.
  • It also envisages boosting the skill of craftsmen, weavers and artisans who are already engaged in the traditional ancestral work.
  • Under the scheme, assistance will be provided to traditional artisans to sell their products in order to make them more compatible with modern markets.
  • It is fully funded by Union Government and Union Ministry of Minority Affairs is nodal agency in implementing it.

Upgradation of Skills and Training in Ancestral Arts/Crafts for Development (USTAD) was announced in 2014 with the Finance Ministry allocating Rs 17 crore for the scheme.


“After the scheme, the artisans or craftsmen will not only earn a good livelihood but their life will be full of confidence and dignity. It will also empower women from the minority communities socially and economically.

It is a major initiative of our government to promote the skills and works of the craftsmen. The rich traditional work of the craftsmen mainly from the minority community has given India a unique identity the world-over.

A portal dedicated to the programme was also launched to?help artisans to log in and get connected to potential buyers world-over.

The National Institute of Design along with a host of other bodies would be associated with this mission and improve designs of the produce if needed, Heptullah added.