6 artisan clusters sanctioned for Shehr-e-Khas

17,000 artisans to be benefited


Jammu, Jan 16: In what could give a major boost to traditional crafts of Kashmir, the government of India has sanctioned six artisan clusters for Shahr-e-Khas. The clusters shall cover six different crafts namely Paper Machie, Pashmina weaving, Aari-Crewel Embroidery, Kani Shawl, Sozni Embroidery and Willow Wicker.
 The state government is likely to secure approval for four more crafts namely Leather, Copperware, Walnut Wood Carving and Khatamband.
 In the next three years more than 17,000 artisans are expected to benefit from the cluster project, which was conceptualized during visit of a central delegation headed by Cabinet Secretary in October, 2011.
 The delegation had felt it essential to adopt a strategy of cluster development for providing skill upgrading common facilities, and fostering market linkages in order to enhance the substantiality and viability of the handicrafts clusters.
 The process of formulation of project was spearheaded by the Chief Secretary Madhav Lal. The JK Entrepreneurship Development Institute was made nodal agency for coordinating the cluster development efforts for the handicraft based clusters for their holistic development.
 The institute appointed IL&FS Cluster Development Initiative Limited as Cluster Development Agency  (CDA) for the project, for providing end-to-end solution ranging from identification of feasible projects, mobilization of funds and its implementation for the comprehensive development of the identified clusters.
 The project mainly focuses on promotion of crafts, natural and cultural built heritage. Development of Cluster Street includes development of crafts tourism trail, up-gradation of the riverfront with improvement of the Ghats as public spaces and development of a riverfront Plaza cum Crafts Bazaar as Hub with decentralized crafts kiosks along the Ghats as Spokes.
 The State Government has worked extensively in this field in last six months and with active involvement of District Administration of Srinagar, Srinagar Municipal Corporation and Industries and Commerce Department, it has resulted into convergence of resources and expertise of these and other departments. The ultimate aim is to honour the contribution of artisans of Shahr-e-Khas and to promote the cultural and heritage tourism activities. The boat services in river Jhelum have already been started.  
 The major activities under the cluster development are Skill Upgradation Training, holding of Integrated Design & Technical Development Workshops, Entrepreneurship Development, setting up of Common Facility Centres and Raw Material Bank, holding Local & Nation Level Exhibitions, and those related to Branding & Publicity, Promotion of Producer Companies and Margin Money Support. It is expected that there will be substantial increase in cluster turnover and earnings of the artisans through these efforts.

Lastupdate on : Wed, 16 Jan 2013 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 16 Jan 2013 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 17 Jan 2013 00:00:00 IST

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