Muslin, also known in Bangladesh as mulmul, is a cotton fabric of plain weave, for which Bangladesh was very famous in the 17th and 18th centuries as some finest Muslins were produced here, which included some varieties that were so thin and fine that an entire Muslin saree made of such fabric could fit inside a single matchbox.
However, as per reports, the art of making such Muslins was lost due to a host of reasons including Industrial Revolution in England, fall of the Mughal Empire, expansion of the East India Company, imposition of high taxes on Muslin, lack of patronage of the British rulers, etc.
However, the lost Muslin yarn technology has now been recovered by an expert team of the Bangladesh Government.
Media reports maintained this while adding that it all started when Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina during a visit to the Ministry of Textiles and Jute in 2014 enquired if the lost technology of Muslin could be restored, subsequent to which a Taka 12.1 crore project came into being while a committee was formed consisting of experts from the Bangladesh Textile Mills Corporation, the Bangladesh Handloom Board (BHB), Bangladesh University of Textiles, the Cotton Development Board, Dhaka University and Rajshahi University even as the project started in July 2018 and wrapped up last month, starting with training of six weavers to churn out fabrics with 200 to 557 yarn count.
Today, around 75 weavers can produce such fine fabrics, the reports claimed further even as the chief scientist of the project titled ‘Bangladesh’s Golden Tradition Muslin Yarn Making Technology and Recovery of Muslin Fabrics (Phase I)’ M. Monzur Hossain stated, “The Muslin we have made is 99 per cent similar to the cloth preserved in the UK’s Victoria and Albert Museum and the National Museum in Bangladesh.”