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Lakshmi Chand Jain

(1925 – 2010) – (Rajasthan)

Lakshmi Chand Jain (Aged 85) a political activist and writer, was born on December 13, 1925 in Bahadurpur. Throughout his life, he served in various capacities such as a member of the Planning Commission, Indian High Commissioner to South Africa, a member of the World Commission on Dams (WCD), and as Secretary of the Indian Cooperative Union and the All-India Handicrafts Board.

However, his position as the ambassador was terminated by the Vajpayee Government for not effectively defending India’s position on nuclear tests in South Africa. Jain was actively involved in the Quit India movement (1942) and during the partition of India (1947), he was responsible for managing the refugee camp at Kingsway Camp in North Delhi.

He introduced cooperative societies for farming and cottage industries in the rehabilitation camps and helped in the rehabilitation project for refugees from Pakistan located in Faridabad. He worked with Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay to organise the Indian Cooperative Union and applied its principles to the handicrafts industry.

Jain directed training, technical services, and loans to India’s struggling self-employed spinners, weavers, carpenters, and metal smiths as Secretary of the All-India Handicrafts Board. He applied modern marketing techniques to promote handicraft sales abroad and organized the Central Cottage Industries Emporium to expand the market at home.

Jain championed artisans against mechanization and mass production, helping millions of independent craftsmen carry on traditional livelihoods in security and pride, and assured the survival of precious arts and skills. He passed away on November 14, 2010.