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Tata Chemicals Limited
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OKHAI – CENTER FOR EMPOWERMENT


OKHAI – Magical Hands! Mystical Colours! A brand created & promoted by Tata Chemicals Limited and Tata Chemicals Society for Rural Development (TCSRD) with the aim of generating empowerment in rural areas.

Okhai has been established as a separate trust in 2009. It would be the front end of all the products manufactured by TCSRD.

The AIM of the trust
To promote, to undertake, to carry out, to sponsor, to assist directly or indirectly any activity which creates employment for educated/trained/capable/qualified rural and semi urban/urban masses and promotes growth of rural economy and rural welfare or upliftment of people in rural/semi urban/urban areas in any part of India.

The VISION of Okhai
To build a sustainable business of rural handicrafts/ products, that helps in empowering women and uplift their economic status, and to build a brand that represents the above.

The Okhamandal region in Gujarat, home to Tata Chemicals Ltd, is a drought prone area. Around 1998, handicrafts were identified as a promising means of generating livelihood for hundreds of women of this area. The women of Okhamandal region are endowed with the talent and traditional skills to make exquisite handicrafts in the typical Okhamandal style. Mirror work, patchwork, embroidery and appliqué work are all the vibrant expression of their way of life, their rituals and their legends.

Okhai helps the women by providing work at their doorsteps.  The production centre is operational at Mithapur, Okhamandal, Gujarat, while the Okhai studio has been setup at Ahmedabad. A stitching center, with 15 automatic machines is also operating at Mithapur.  An automatic cutting machine and steam press are also installed Aft.er the designs are prepared, the required material (cloth, threads, beads etc) is sent to several villages (the farthest being about 20kms away from the Okhai Center).  Each village has Self Help Groups. 39 SHGs, with over 425 members, are currently registered with Okhai.  The material is delivered to the Pramukh (Chief) of the SHG, who then further distributes the work to the ladies.  The finished goods are then collected during the next run. 

Payments to these women are decided on the basis of the intricacies of the embroidery done by them.  Okhai makes payment to the pramukhs, who in turn gives to their SHG’s members involved in the work.

The women are also taken for exposure visits to get an understanding on how the others in the same arena are working.

Okhai products are sold through the Okhai Retail Outlets – An exclusive shop at Ahmedabad and at Mithapur; through Retail Sales to other shops – supplying at two shops in Mumbai, one each in Pune, Kolkata and Goa.

Apart from this, exhibitions are conducted at different cities. Products are also being sold on-line through the Okhai’s website

OKHAI
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