Tamil Nadu, September 4, 2019, The Liberacy:- Dindigul, a city in the state of Tamil Nadu of India, lies in the southernmost part. Dindigul is famous for the manufacturing of “Locks”.
S Venkatachalam founded the lock manufacturing company at the age of 7 and now, 52 years later of his initiative and long struggle, the Dindigul Locks have gained the Geographical Indications (GI) tag from the government. GI tag is the certification that describes the origin of certain product or thing (Example:- The GI tag of Oranges is with Nagpur and GI tag of Litchi is with Muzaffarpur.)
On Saturday, 31st August 2019, the GI tag was awarded.
The founder, S Venkatachalam, and Murugan says, “This business of lock manufacturing once flourished to the never imaginable heights and sold the product in a wide market. Even the prisons here and in the nearby areas used our lock because of the life span. Some of the prisons here still use our locks with an average life of 50 years.”
“We have many unique models, but the most sold is Mango 63mm and 75mm. We have a unique model called ‘Killer Lock’, if you put a wrong key in the lock, a knife pops out that can even cut your finger. We also make gold locks, on order.” they added.
The once flourished market of Dindigul Locks has now downgraded to lowest and adding to this, Venkatachalam said, “Once we had several factories in the village, with hundreds of people working in one factory, but now we have fewer factories occupying a dozen of workers.”
Chinnaraja G Naidu, Deputy Registrar of GI said, “The tag given to Dindigul was to revive the long legacy of lock manufacturing and to improve the livelihood of the people associated with it. The other focus was to popularize the brand and flourish the market.”
Dindigul locks are 80% made by manual work and 20% using machines. Some of the lock patters are so unique that the owners have to come all the way to Dindigul for a spare/duplicate key.