Presently, 70 employees, mostly women, are engaged in weaving at Biren's establishment
Presently, 70 employees, mostly women, are engaged in weaving at Biren's establishment

Manipur inventor ushers new era in handloom sector with innovative power loom

ANI | Updated: Feb 26, 2020 20:19 IST

Imphal (Manipur) [India], Feb 26 (ANI): A 55-year-old innovator named Sorokhaibam Biren who hails from the Bishnupur district of Manipur, is quickly gaining popularity for his endeavour to develop a first-of-its-kind prototype of a modified power loom.
Biren has ushered a new era of highly automated power looms that are proving to be of enormous advantage to the Manipuri weavers.
Talking about the humble beginnings of his project, the innovator said: "I began this with an investment of around Rs 40,000. Initially, I constructed the machine with second-hand parts. In mid 2011, I received some financial assistance from the National Innovative Foundation (NIF) and carried forth with the development of the device."
"The machine that I have here is a simple loom machine and I am still working to upgrade it. Earlier, it was semi-power loom but now it is fully powered," Biren added.
The power loom is highly adjustable and can be easily attuned as per the raw material at hand. This results in better product output.
Presently, 70 employees, mostly women, are engaged in weaving at Biren's establishment. The output of the device is 25 to 50 times more than the traditional shuttle loom, and almost any other power loom.
The machine can weave 3 to 4 units of fabric per hour which is significantly more than the traditional loom that can hardly weave 1 to 2 units per day.
The workers are of the opinion that the new automated machine loom would bring them profit and at the same time it will enhance their skills.
"I feel happy that the opportunity to work here covers my expenses. It feels good working here," said Ibomcha, a staff member under Biren.
Biren originally got the inspiration to develop the unique power loom upon seeing the plight of weavers in a village named Chingmei, which is located in the Moirangkhunou area of Manipur.
The innovator is now busy making many modified power looms at a work shed that is set up at his residence, under the brand Stephia Mini Power loom.
At the same time, he has also employed six mechanics that are being paid with salaries ranging from Rs 13,000 to Rs 16,000 per month.
Moreover, the demand for Biren's power loom has gradually soared as many clients are purchasing it for commercial purposes.
It is worth mentioning that in 2004, the National Innovative Foundation recognized his innovative device and provided him with funds to improve upon it.
Since then, there was no looking back for Biren as he was felicitated at Pride of India Expo, 105th Indian Science Congress 2018, by the Manipur Modern Power Loom Entrepreneurs' Association. (ANI)