Hemp footwear gifted by PM Modi to Kashi temple monks made in Kullu : The Tribune India

Tribune News Service

Dipender Manta

Mandi, January 11

It is on the request of Prime Minister Narendra Modi that 50 pairs of hemp footwear, prepared in Kullu, have been sent for priests of the Kashi Vishwanath Temple.

Wearable in temple

  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi had evinced keen interest in these slippers during his visit to Mandi on December 27
  • The hemp fibre slippers are considered pure for wearing inside temples
  • These were at display at a stall in Mandi
  • Modi had desired that these be sent for priests of the Kashi Vishwanath temple as during winters, they may face difficulties in performing puja bare feet

PM Modi had evinced keen interest in these slippers, made of hemp fibre, during his visit to Mandi on December 27. The hemp fibre slippers called “pule” in Kullu are considered pure for wearing inside temples. These were at display at a stall set up by a government department in the Paddal ground. Modi had desired that these be sent for priests of the Kashi Vishwanath temple as during winters, they may face difficulties in performing puja bare feet.

Deputy Commissioner, Kullu, Ashutosh Garg said, “On the demand of the PM, we sent 50 slippers to the PMO a few days ago. These slippers were prepared by local residents, who have expertise in preparing ropes, bags and slippers of hemp.

The Himachal Government is contemplating allowing controlled cultivation of cannabis, not just for the pharmaceutical industry but also to popularise its other byproducts like hemp ropes, slippers and garments, which are in huge demand, especially abroad. However, a decision has been pending even though locals are demanding that allowing the controlled cannabis cultivation will help them economically.

On the temple premises, the use of shoes, made of leather and rubber, is prohibited but the slippers made of hemp are considered pious and priests can wear these inside temple.

In parts of Himachal such as Kullu and Mandi, hemp is traditionally been used for making footwear, ropes, mats and its seeds used in local cuisine.