Rejuvenating Pottery

Celebrating 125th Anniversary of Dr. J. C. Kumarappa

Report of a Thematic Discussion

“Rejuvenating Pottery in Vidarbha Region”


30th January 2017

Organised by

Centre of Science for Villages, Wardha

 Institute of Gandhian Studies, Wardha 

Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti, New Delhi

Report of a Thematic Discussion

As a part of the yearlong program of “125 Anniversary of Dr. J. C. Kumarappa” being celebrated by “Centre of Science for Villages”, Wardha in collaboration with “Institute of Gandhian Studies”, Wardha and “Gandhi Smriti Darshan Samity” New Delhi a thematic discussion on  “Rejuvenating Rural Pottery in Vidarbha Region” was organized on 30th January 2017 at “Centre of Science for Villages”, Dattapur, Wardha.

Historical Background: In the artisanal sector Centre of Science for Villages had worked in the subject of “Red Clay Rural Pottery” as it had important role till recently. Traditionally pottery was a vibrant artisanal activity in more than 2,000 clusters of villages across India and it catered the need of the all sectors of the society.

Problems of Pottery: Since last three decades pottery is facing multiple problems associated with allied sectors and some of these are listed below..

  • Research and developmental activities are limited.
  • Identification of mud or clay of appropriate kind needs scientific approach.
  • Availability of clay of appropriate kind near potter’s cluster needs assurance.
  • Updating the methods of processing clay to make it potter friendly.
  • Lack of appropriate and affordable tools and equipment required for continuation and automation of pottery.
  • Research work on alternative fuel for firing is also a matter of great concern.
  • Knowledge base of people involved in the field of pottery and allied sectors is eroding rapidly & requires urgent attention.
  • Limitation in the sector of product diversification is omnipresent.
  • Designing efficient kiln for rural red clay pottery is also a subject of immediate technology and logistic intervention.
  • Market of pottery wares needs new look

Focal Points:

       Overall discussion summed up through obtaining concern upon some focal points related to pottery and allied sectors.

  • Pottery needs to be protected by a policy dialogue and programs dedicated to pottery only. Government rules and regulations need to be streamlined and simplified in excavation of clay from mines and providing financial assistance for the potters to undertake production activities.
  • Number of centers for excellence should be established to demonstrate possible intervention with S&T application.
  • The syllabus of pottery manufacturing need to be incorporated in the education system.
  • Government should make number of Common Facility Centers (CFC) for Potters either in selected institutes or amongst potters.
  • Establishing pilot demonstration units on pottery across the country and pave way for the production activities and establishing replicable models.
  • Machines and tools available in the market are not useful to individual potter, hence there is need to develop all machines and equipments which are small, hand operated or needs less horse powered machines.
  • Number of institutions like CSV, MGIRI, Gramoday Sangh etc. are developing appropriate tools and machines for pottery unit and it includes Fly wheel operated potter’s wheel; Solar powered operated potter’s wheel; Blunzer; Low Cost Solar Powered Kiln , Gas Kiln (1 kg gas can fire 20 kg pottery wares) etc.
  • Red Clay Rural Pottery was a gainful employment across the country till early eighties of last century.
  • Traditional pottery wares have limited demand now days.
  • Design intervention need to be attended for finding the possibilities of creating new designed products as per the market demand.
  • There are number of new pottery items developed by CSV, the demand of which could be fulfilled exclusively by potters. These are
    • Conical Tilessecond-program-clip2
    • Face Tiles
    • Cool Pot (Sheetal Patra);
    • Emitters;
    • Biogas Burners;
    • Filter Pot
    • Cooking Pots and
    • Decorative items.
    • Glazed pottery also has a niche market and its production should be promoted as per the demand.
  • CFC can be engaged in providing training in the modern products manufacturing system.
  • The major limiting factor for pottery are
    • Availability of Clay. It can be solved by forming CFC.
    • Supply of traditional fuel (Wood). In earlier days it was available freely or it was very cheap. It needs lots of funds from Government or Corporate sector for research and development.
    • There is need to find other options for firing pottery wares which are environmentally friendly, easily available and cost effective (Examples are Rice Husk; Solar Fired Kiln; Gas Fired Kiln)
  • On some occasion people do prefer traditional pottery items like Deepak; Idols of Deities etc. but its expanse in not throughout year.
  • For solving problems of marketing of individual potters, there is need to make mega marketing outlets on the busy routes (National and State Highways) across the Vidarbha
  • Networking: Likeminded people have interest in developing the traditional pottery craft. A platform needs to be formed with the participation of techno craft, researchers, scientists, planners, designers etc.  This body will function as an advisory body.
  • Advertising: The importance and salient features of pottery products need to be widely published and bring to the notice of government and public.

Supporting Documents: 

I: Organisations

  1. Centre of Science for Villages
  2. Institute of Gandhian Studies, Wardha
  3. Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti, New Delhi 

II. Proceedings of the Thematic Discussion

The thematic discussion was held on 30th January 2017 in the Pottery Section of Centre of Science for Villages. Program consisted of following activities

  • Lightening of Lamp
  • Floral Tribute was paid to Dr. J. C. Kumarappa
  • Self introduction by the participants
  • Discussion


III. Representatives of following institutes were invited in the meeting:

  • Centre of Science for Villages, (CSV) Dattapur, Wardha
  • Institute of Gandhian Studies (IGS), Gopuri, Wardha
  • Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Rural Industrialization (MGIRI), Wardha
  • Gramoday Sangh, Bhadrawati, Chandrapur
  • Common Facility Center (CFC), Peth, Nagpur
  • Sant Garoba Gram Vikas Prashikshan Sansthan, Yeoti, Ralegaaon, Yavatmal
  • Khadi and Village Industry Commission (KVIC), Nagpur
  • Centre for Social Development, Ammandivilai, Thirunainarkurchi, Kanyakumari, Tamilnadu 629-204

IV.  List of Publications Received:

  • Revival of Artisan Pottery by Dr. P. Bagavatheeswaran
  • Emerging trends of Red Clay Pottery Industries at Vidarbha by Shashi Prakash Mishra & Dr. A. K. J. Mansuri
  • Problems of Indian Red Clay Pottery (Terracotta) Industries and Policies for Development by Shashi Prakash Mishra & Dr. A. K. J. Mansuri
  • Revolutionary Training Module an effective tools for Self Employment by S P Mishra, Ujwala Gujar, Leena Bansod, A. K. J. Mansuri, L K Das, P B Kale
  • Natural Colours and Terracotta Jewellery by Shashi Prakash Mishra, Ujwala S. Gujar, Prof Lalit Kumar Das, Leena Bansod, Sujata P. Bhalshankar
  • Clay Emitter Irrigation System by Dr. Soham Pandya

V. List of Participants:

Following participants participated in the consultative dialogue.

  • Shri Bharat Mahodaya:             09850307960
  • Dr. Soham Pandya:                    09890434003
  • Mr. Dhananjay Bhatt:               09881554681
  • Mr. Anil Nirmal:                        07507011772
  • Mr. Rao:                                      09665041123
  • Mr. Vijay Srivastav:                  09822231729
  • Mr. Motiram Khandare:
  • Mr. Pramod Khandare:           9923138547
  • Mr. Parmanad Prajapati:
  • Mr. Vitthal Borkar:                   7507595726