First Handloom and Handicraft exhibition in Srinagar after COVID-19 pandemic

To provide direct marketing support to maximum number of artisans and weavers who are distressed due to the pandemic, the Jammu and Kashmir administration is organising the first ‘Handloom and Handicrafts Exhibition’ at Numaish Gah, Kashmir Haat, on a rotational basis.

The J-K administration shall ensure that social distancing norms are adhered to at the exhibition. It has urged civil society members, youth and the working-class to visit Numaish Gah (Kashmir Haat) in large numbers and buy local genuine handloom and handicraft products at the fair to get value for their money besides providing succour to the weavers and artisans and ensure business continuity.

“The world is surviving on hope. We’re also hopeful that our business will revive through the handloom fair. The lockdown caused heavy losses to our business and the J-K administration has come to our rescue at a pivotal point. Such initiatives favour local artisans like us,” Umar Ahmad, a local artisan, said.

The local hand made items like Pashmina, Kani Shawls, Silk carpets, Papier Mache, Copperware, Sozni embroidery, Chain Stitch and Crewel, Aari and Staple, Felted Numdhas and Pherans with Zari shall be displayed at the handloom and handicraft exhibition.

People from across Kashmir are coming to this exhibition to relax and shop after the COVID-19 lockdown to buy the local items and provide an economic boost to these artisans.

“We’re thankful to the handicraft department for organising this fair after the lockdown. We picked a lot of unique and interesting handloom pieces from the exhibition. I really appreciate this move because it has helped the buyers as well as seller,” Masrat Jan, another customer, said.

“I’ve visited this exhibition at the Kashmir Haat for the first time. I shopped for a few bags that were made in authentic style and it was priced at reasonable rates as well. I’ve truly enjoyed the experience,” Fayaz Ahmad, a customer, said.

J-K administration is making concerted efforts to bridge the gap between local artisans and weavers, technology and market place by organising such exhibitions to counter the negative impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

“It’s a wonderful platform to promote the local artisans of Kashmir. In the coming times, maximum people will benefit from such exhibitions. We have kept the vision of ‘Vocal for Local’ at the center. The artisans have collaborated with the e-commerce platform Flipkart through this exhibition and are selling their products online too,” Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, District Collector (DC) – Srinagar, told ANI.

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