Artisan welfare, quality production essential for handicrafts survival: Omar

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah having a look at handicraft item during Buyer-Seller meet on Monday.
Chief Minister Omar Abdullah having a look at handicraft item during Buyer-Seller meet on Monday.

Excelsior Correspondent
SRINAGAR, May 14: Asking the Jammu and Kashmir trading and manufacturing fraternity to make quality benchmark of their production and commercial activities, Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah on Monday stressed on ensuring maximum returns to the artisans and artists associated with the world famous Kashmir-handicrafts.
“The magic hands of artists and artisans should receive due respect and best returns for the mesmerising workmanship they translate into different forms of handicrafts through needle, chisel, brush and other tools”, he said, adding that the survival of handicraft industry is dependent on the welfare of artisans associated with it and the quality of product marketed.
“Gone is the generation of artisans who used to wait for months and even years to receive the remunerations for their work. Also, gone is the generation which used to get mere 10 percent of the final sale price of the product”, Omar Abdullah said, adding that present day artisans want the befitting share for their work and we should extend justice to them in this regard.
Inaugurating 4th International 3-day Buyer-Seller Meet at SKICC here, the Chief Minister said that the revival of visiting buyers from all over the world to the Valley to buy handicrafts is most encouraging. He expressed the hope that this trend will continue to grow till the past glory of the State in this field is restored back.
Omar Abdullah said that the trade and tourism in the Valley are closely related to each other and peace is imperative for the both. He said the peaceful situation in the State during the last year has given considerable fillip to the tourism and also to the economic activities especially handicrafts trade.
The Chief Minister said that his Government would like to develop direct liaison between the buyers and producers of handicrafts to help them receive substantial remunerations for their products. He revealed the need for producing quality products to maintain reputation.
The Chief Minister also emphasized the need of renovation and changes in the production and manufacturing of handicrafts to suite the changing tastes of the world. “World is ever changing. Constant change is only constant and in the realm of handicrafts possibility of renovation and change cannot be under estimated. This is essential element of success”, he said adding that Craft Development Institution, Carpet Technology Centre and Leather Institution are some of the institutions which can help in this field.
Minister for Tourism, Nawang Rigzin Jora, Minister for Industries, S. S. Slathia, Minister of State for Tourism, Nasir Aslam Wani, Chairman, J&K Bank, Mushtaq Ahmad and KCCI President, Abdul Hameed Punjabi also spoke on the occasion.
The Chief Minister inspected 40 stalls installed by the traders at SKICC to facilitate the buyers-sellers interactions for trade. Some 60 to 70 buyers from about 20 foreign countries are participating in the meet besides buyers from the country.

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