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Balijatra-09 highlights rural crafts of country
10
Nov '09
Cuttack's Balijatra-2009 was recently organized on the banks of the Mahanadi, which is a single largest gathering in the state of Orissa after Puri's rath yatra, wherein the rural crafts from the whole country were the major attraction.

Around 300 artisans and self-help groups from about 28 different states participated in the fair that opened on 3rd November and concluded on 8th of this month. The largest participant of the fair was Gandhi Shilp Bazaar, which had set up 310 stalls and kiosks at the fair out of 1,300 stalls.

Gandhi Shilp Bazaar has been organized jointly by Cuttack Chapter of Orissa Rural Development and Marketing Society (Ormas) and Cuttack administration, and sponsored by the Central Development Commissioner of Handicrafts in the Ministry of Textile.

As per the Cuttack collector Mr. Kishore Kumar Mohanty, this fair is the most favorite destination of the artisans to participate as it is a substantial platform to promote ethnic and rural crafts, and to create opportunities to form long-term marketing tie-ups with prospective buyers.

Around 300,000 people visited the fair, where chanderi saris and brass metal products from Madhya Pradesh, woollen items from Kashmir, leather products from Rajasthan, wooden items from Andhra Pradesh, cane and bamboo craft from Tripura and Meghalaya were among the major goods on display.

By providing a stage to the craftsmen, buyer-seller meets and a forum for technology transfer, the Gandhi Shilp Bazaar facilitated the future marketing prospects, said Ormas. In addition to this, the artisans obtain chance to receive direct feedback from end-users of its products as well as to get information on the market trends and preferences.

Agencies such as Khadi and Village Industries Corporation, Nabard, Union Textile Ministry, Mission Shakti and Rural Development Agencies of Orissa also marked their presence in the fair.

Ormas displayed handloom, terracotta and knotted carpets in the fair to spread awareness about the products. Besides, various seminars and workshops on micro-credit linkages, marketing and packaging of rural products had also been conducted under Gandhi Shilpa Bazaar.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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