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Department of Handicrafts and Handloom  is holding a craft safari tour in Srinagar to promote Kashmiri art (Photo/ANI)
Department of Handicrafts and Handloom is holding a craft safari tour in Srinagar to promote Kashmiri art (Photo/ANI)

J-K administration organizes craft safari tour to boost Kashmir art, handlooms

ANI | Updated: Dec 20, 2021 04:50 IST

Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir) [India], December 20 (ANI): Jammu and Kashmir Department of Handicrafts and Handloom on Sunday organised a craft safari tour in Srinagar's Eidgah to boost Kashmir art and promote artisans work.
During this craft safari tour, the Director of Handicraft along with other officials, tour operators, hoteliers, houseboat owners, businessmen and civil society members visited many workshops where the artisan community are doing their daily craftwork.
Tourists also visit the workshops including wood carving, crewel working, chain stitches, Sozni caps made by pashmina and spinning units where women prepare cotton for pashmina shawls.

The unique and amazing hand works of artisans are famous across the globe and have a good international market. But for the last thirty years of insurgency and overall disturbing atmosphere Kashmir art and artisan community faces a lot of hardships.
So, to revive the old aged rich craft government starts a unique type of activity titled craft tours or craft safari walk in old Srinagar where such type of artwork is going on and maximum artisan communities are living there.
Recently, Srinagar city also made entry in United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) list through old aged rich cultural, traditional art and craft.
Speaking to ANI, Mehmood Ahmad Shah, Director of Handicraft Kashmir said, "Well Srinagar city is very famous culturally and traditionally and this old aged rich craft has huge importance. Recently Srinagar city made an entry into the UNESCO heritage list due to its art and craft. So the purpose of this special craft safari is to restore the glory of this centuries-old and rich art and promote Kashmir art and artisan community."

He further said as Kashmir is a tourist place it is important to promote and show diversity in art and craft in the valley. Such kinds of tours empower artisans to work.
"Efforts are aimed at educating tourists about the efforts these artisans put in place by involving tour and travel fraternity and tourism department," said Shah.
The artisan community also appreciates the department of handicraft to start this unique initiative in the shape of this craft safari tour and they hope that in future with the help of such types of steps Kashmir art will be promoted and artisans will get some benefits.
A wood carving artist, Mudasir said, "I think this is a highly appreciated step taken by the Department of Handicrafts and Handloom to promote the Kashmiri art. We are in this business for the last 200 years and I am associated with this for the last 20 years but this is beyond expectation. Because of our rich art culture recently Kashmir made it the list of UNESCO. I think if the government continues to take such steps like art safari then artisan feel that something is happening for them too. They feel motivated."
Mohsin Fayaz, a Sozni work artisan said that with the art safari they getting recognition.
"This is a very good initiative. From such steps, our crafts get recognition in the market and artisans also get recognition from such tours. There should more such tours for us," said Fayaz.
A Crewelwork artisan, Shaista Bilal said this is a very important step especially for women, with this they can earn.

Mohsina, a Pashmina artisan said, "This is a very good step as it will also develop our culture. Old artisan work will also get recognition with such an art safari. Women who are coming here to work were setting unemployed at their home and were doing nothing for the last few years but because of the safari they are now getting jobs."
Mohsina further said that government should always take such steps to promote Kashmiri culture, art and people's work. (ANI)