Craft Bazaar at Kashmir Haat kicked off
12 lakh tourists including pilgrims visited Kashmir this year: CM
Srinagar, Sep 4: Chief Minister Omar Abdullah Sunday inaugurated a national handicraft festival ‘Craft Bazaar’ at Kashmir Haat here.
Scheduled to conclude on September 17, the exhibition is being organized by an artisans’ body ‘Dastakaati Haat Samiti’.
The CM on the occasion said: “This year so far about 12 lakh tourists including Amaranth Yatris visited Kashmir but the Kashmir Haat has seen little buzz. So there is a need to make this place better for earning the revenue from increasing tourist rush.”
Omar said: “If we had been able to attract only 10 per cent of those tourists to Kashmir Haat we could have generated handsome business for our artisans.”
He said the craftsmen and artisans should take proper benefits of Kashmir Haat for boosting entrepreneurship in handicraft.
“It (Kashmir Haat) is best place for the promotion of handicrafts and providing opportunities to the artisans to sell their handicraft items directly to the customer and removing the middlemen,” Omar said.
While expressing his dissatisfaction on poor response of customers, he asked the handicrafts department to organize regular activities in the Haat with mega handicrafts mela once or twice in a year.
Omar emphasized the need for building strong interstate relations between the artisan of J&K with their counterparts in rest of the country.
“During the pleasant summers you can invite your artisans and craftsmen from rest of the country and ask them to earn with you here. They can reciprocate it by inviting you to their States during winter months for business,” he said, adding that it would create direct liaison between the craftsmen of the States with the artisans in other parts of the country and open new vistas of economic welfare.
Stressing on the quality of products, Omar said, “Some unscrupulous traders who indulge in unfair means, are tarnishing the image of world famous Kashmir handicrafts.”
He said the government would keep constant vigil on their activities while artisans had a responsibility too. “You should report such elements for severe actions,” he stressed on artisans.
Speaking on the occasion the Minister for Industries S.S. Slathia spelt out the measures Omar led government has taken to promote Kashmir handicrafts and help welfare of the artisans
The Minister said that government has increased the stipend of undertrained artisans in government craft centres from Rs. 100 to Rs. 500 and from Rs. 200 to 700 per month. “We have also raised the artisan award from to Rs. 50,000 from Rs. 15,000. Similarly the loan quantum has also been raised from Rs. 50000 to Rs. One lakh per unit,” he said.
The mela in which artisans from the State and all over India are participating has been organised by the Dastkari Simiti. As many as 70 stalls of different handicrafts from the State and the outside have been installed in the mela.
Giving aims and objectives of the mela the President of the Simiti Jaya Jaitely said that it has been organised to bring Kashmiri artisans in direct liaison with the market and help build their ties with the artisans of other parts of the country for mutual economic benefits.
She gave resume of the activities of the Simiti and said that its endeavour is to eliminate the influence of middlemen and help artisans to get adequate returns for their works.
Chief Secretary Madhav Lal, Principal Secretary Industries Umang Narula and officers of Handicrafts Department were present on the occasion, besides a large number of artisans and handicrafts lovers.
Lastupdate on : Sun, 4 Sep 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Sun, 4 Sep 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Mon, 5 Sep 2011 00:00:00 IST
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