Research and Development in natural fibres such as Banana, Himalayan nettle, Bamboo and hemp is supported under "Scheme for Research and Development for the Textile Industry including Jute" of the Ministry of Textiles.
Under the scheme, Government of India provides financial support to the extent of 70% of the project cost for undertaking applied research and to the extent of 100% for undertaking basic research by reputed research agencies including Textile Research Associations (TRAs), Universities, Industry Associations, Government approved research centers such as IITs/Government aided Institutions/ recognized engineering colleges/institutions approved by DST/DSIR etc.
For the Himalayan Indian Nettle, Government has granted approval for a project titled Development of products from Himalayan Indian nettle with project cost of Rs. 67.48 lakh, to Department of Jute and Fibre Technology, Institute of Jute Technology, University of Kolkata. Similarly, for Banana Fibre, Government has given approval for two projects titled “Development of eco-friendly recyclable/bio-degradable value added technical textiles from banana yarns” (Completed in 2013) and “Development of banana fabric suitable for extreme cold Weather by plasma Technology” (Completed in 2015) to Manmade Textile Research Association, Surat. MANTRA is making efforts to commercialize these products.
The above information was given by the Minister of State, Textiles, Shri Ajay Tamta today, in a written reply to a Lok Sabha question.