The Surat textile cluster is facing a labor shortage. These units are heavily dependent on migrant labor, especially from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Orissa and Rajasthan. These workers haven’t returned after Holi and have taken a prolonged vacation especially in view of the elections. And this is happening at a time when textile units are flooded with orders for fabrics, dress materials, sarees and home furnishing due to the peak marriage season. Production has fallen by nearly 30 per cent. On an average, the daily minimum dispatch of textiles from Surat to other cities is around Rs 125 crores, but this has fallen to Rs 90 crores.
Surat’s textile cluster is one of the biggest textile clusters of India. Mandap cloth manufacturers in Surat and neighboring places are facing a similar issue. Surat is the biggest manufacturer of mandap cloth in the country with more than 250 units manufacturing only mandap cloth. There are nearly 1000 other units manufacturing mandap cloth as well as other fabrics. Surat’s textile cluster consists of more than 6.50 lakh power looms, nearly 4.50 lakh process houses and about 70,000 traders who add value in terms of making dress material, sarees and readymade garments. The industry is often plagued with labor absenteeism in case of natural calamities or disasters in the states from where migrant laborers hail.