Genesis of MGIRI
MGIRI’s Origin in AIVIA founded by Bapu


Gandhiji started the All India Village Industries Association on 14-12-1934 in the upperroom of Mahila Ashram, Wardha. Dr Josef Cornellius Kumarappa, known for his theory of Economy of Permanence was chosen by the Congress to lead this movement as per Bapu’s wishes. Shri Krishnadas Jaju became its first President. AIVIA had a Board of 18 advisors consisting of distinguished scientists like Dr C V Raman and Dr J C Bose and also many leaders in public life and industry: Rabindranath Tagore, G D Birla, M A Ansari, and Satish Chandra Das Gupta among others.

The AIVIA soon got reorganized in Maganwadi, a spacious orchard belonging to Seth Jamanalal Bajaji. Gandhiji stayed here with Kasturba during 1934-36 and supervised the works of AIVIA.


Soon Maganwadi became a hub of rural industrial activity and a centre to coordinate industrial experiences and knowledge from all parts of the country with focus on research, production, training, extension, organization propaganda and publication.

AIVIA succeeded in reviving and nurturing a number of rural industries through science and technology. Paddy husking, flour grinding, oil pressing, bee keeping, palm gur making, paper making, soap making, village pottery, paints and ink making, Magan Dipa were some of the initial directions.

The new processes, techniques and machines were brought to the knowledge of the public through exhibitions. AIVIA also struggled to bring about a transformation in the villages in terms of sanitation, improved diet, indigenous healthcare and local resource based employment.

Gandhiji also inaugurated in 1936 the Wardha Haat meant to provide the feel of the market to the producer of village industries products. After Gandhiji passed away Dr Kumarappa became its President and Dr G Ramachandran his Secretary from 1949 up to 1951.

Jamanalal Bajaj Central Research Institute

The KVIB created JBCRI, Jamanalal Bajaj Central Research
Institute in 1955 – to carry forward the R&D works of AIVIA, From 1st April 1957, theInstitute came under the KVIC which was established in 1956.

Dr. M S Rao took over as the first Director of JBCRI.

The objects of the institute are to carry on research and investigations into the problems of village industries and in particular the development of improved tools and techniques. Then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, President Rajendra Prasad visited JBCRI.

AIVIA sections taken over by JBCRI were: Khadi, Oil & Ghani, Pottery, Honey Bee, Village Oil Industries, Paper, Soap non-edible oil


Sections added were:

Food Processing, Bio-chemistry, Lime Industries, Instrumentation

Certain modifications introduced by JBCRI in the earlier machines/ processors were well accepted. Typical examples are:

Dr. M S Rao displaying products to Dr. Rajendra Prasad

  • Wooden decorticator made into steel based design
  • Ground nut Sheller
  • img5

  • Modified dhaan chakki
  • Recovery of bone and glue from flaying centre
  • Honey standards
  • Simple pottery machines like jaw crusher, jar mill and jigger jolly introduced in pottery work

When KVIC adopted a more inclusive definition of rural industries permitting an infinite number of activities vide Rama Krishnaiyya Commission Report 1987 a new pattern of R&D support system became necessary. The revamping of JBCRI into MGIRI based on a ‘hub and spokes model’ took place in 2001.

Revamping of JBCRI into MGIRI

Mahatma Gandhi Institute of Rural Industrialisation at Wardha has been developed during the past 6 years by the collaborative efforts of KVIC and IIT Delhi*. It was decided to set up this National Institute at the historical premises of Maganwadi, Wardha.


To support, upgrade and accelerate the process of Rural Industrialization in the country so that we may move towards the Gandhian vision of sustainable village economy self sufficient in employment and amenities and to provide S&T inputs to make the rural products and services globally competitive.

The Ramakrishnaiah Committee (1987) recommended that any product could be considered as rural as long as the concerned industry has a per capita investment of Rs 50,000 (now raised to Rs 1,00,000 and Rs 1,50,000 for the tribal areas) and is located in a habitat with population less than 20,000 (now raised to 50,000).

The paradigm shift, as explained above, needed an institute capable of dealing with a large number of technologies and industrial contexts involving myriads of materials, manufacturing processes and consumer oriented designs.

A ‘hub and spokes’ model was considered essential and thus MGIRI was established (by revamping the JBCRI) as a hub linking the rural industries with a network of specialized S&T and management institutions. The entire project of establishment and trial-run took nearly 8 years (2001 to 2008) and was a collaborative effort of the KVIC with IIT Delhi.


Set up a strong two-way linkage between itself and the rural industrialists and technical experts in professional Institutes so as to facilitate quick availability of modern science, technology and management inputs for rural industrialization.

Create a science and technology hub for KVI sector by developing strong linkages and interface with other Institutions in the field of rural industrialization.
Build a database of technologies available in KVI sector.
Facilitate setting up of rural industrial estates and clusters with necessary infrastructural facilities like power, specialized tool rooms, testing and marketing facilities.
Undertake and sponsor projects capable of giving substantial fillip to larger and increased market penetration to selected products of village industry.
Promote innovation through pilot studies and field trials through research, extension, education and training.
Conduct specialized human resource development programmes in generic areas such as Total Quality Management, creativity and innovation besides, rural entrepreneurship development.
Provide Training to Trainers of the Centres of KVIC and Khadi & Village Industries Boards of state governments.



MGIRI, Wardha consists of six major divisions catering to the generic areas of rural industrialization as given below:

* Khadi & Textile Industries division

* Bio-processing and Herbal based Industries division

* Chemical Industries division

* Rural Crafts and Engineering division

* Rural Infrastructure and Energy division

* Management and Systems division

The necessary infrastructural facilities to cater to current requirements of the above sections have been developed. However, the approach to be followed by MGIRI will be primarily to act as a facilitator and as nodal networking institute for promoting Rural Industrialization. Accordingly, only selective R&D work will be carried out at the MGIRI campus and all efforts will be made to direct the projects to respective interfacial working groups and expert organizations after appropriate need identification as well as competence matching. Presently, there are 14 interfaces and it is planned to setup another 20 to 25 interfaces during the next 5 years to create a wide network throughout the country.