The Pochampally Village in Telangana State has been selected as one of the best Tourism Villages by the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO). The prestigious award will be given on the occasion of the 24th session of the UNWTO General Assembly on 2nd December 2021 in Madrid, Spain.
The Union Minister of Culture, Tourism and Development of North Eastern Region (DoNER) congratulated the people of the village and said, “Pochampally’s unique weaving styles and patterns received special focus through Prime Minister Sri Narendra Modi’s mantra of Vocal 4 Local as a part of Atma Nirbhar Bharat.” “On behalf of the people of Pochampally in particular and the people of Telangana, I am grateful that this award has been bestowed on the Village of Pochampally. I am also grateful to the Ministry officials in presenting the case for Pochampally and other entries effectively”, the Union Minister added.
The Best Tourism Villages by UNWTO Pilot initiative aims to award those villages which are outstanding examples of rural destinations and showcase good practices in line with its specified nine evaluation areas. It also aims to support villages to enhance their rural tourism potential through training and access to opportunities for improvement. The Ministry of Tourism recommended three villages for the UNWTO Best Tourism Village entry from India. These were Kongthong in Meghalaya, Ladhpura Khas, Madhya Pradesh and Pochampally in Telangana. Pochampally, was awarded by UNWTO.
Pochampally, 50 Kms from Hyderabad, is a town in Nalgonda district of Telangana and is often referred to as the Silk City of India for the exquisite sarees that are woven through a unique style called Ikat. This style, Pochampally Ikat, received a Geographical Indicator (GI Status) in 2004.
Ikat is a Malaysian, Indonesian word which means “Tie and Dye”. Ikat involves the process of wrapping (or tying) and dyeing sections of bundled yarn to a predetermined colour pattern before they are woven. The dye penetrates into exposed sections while the wrapped section remains undyed. This pattern formed by the yarn in this process is woven into fabric.
In 2015, to recognise the diversity of weaving techniques and our rich handloom tradition, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated the first National Handloom Day on August 7 as a tribute to the formal proclamation of the Swadeshi Movement that was made in a meeting at the Calcutta Town hall on the same day in 1905.
Pochampally is also known as Bhoodan Pochampally to commemorate the Bhoodan Movement that was launched by Acharya Vinobha Bhave from this village on April 18th, 1951. Currently a two room Vinobha Bhave Mandir exists within the village which was earlier the place where Vinobha Bhave resided during his visit to the village.
The Union Minister Shri G. Kishan Reddy said, “The Ministry of Tourism has drafted a Rural Tourism Policy which will not only promote tourism within our villages but also revitalise local arts and crafts and promote rural economy. It will help redevelop and rebuild our villages and rural life and the residents of the villages will also get an opportunity to engage and interact with people from outside”.
The Union Minister of Tourism also spoke about the Prime Minister’s call from the ramparts of the Red Fort on the occasion of India’s 73rd Independence Day. The Minister said, “Our Prime Minister requested the citizens of our country to travel to at least 15 tourist destinations across our country. Taking this vision forward I would urge the citizens to include rural destinations such as Pochampally that have a rich cultural heritage in their travel itinerary and explore the beauty of the villages in our country.”