Umeed women’s Haat coming up in Jammu soon: MD JKRLM

Excelsior Correspondent

SRINAGAR, Mar 12: Umeed women’s Haat, a five -day exposition of traditional crafts and culinary skills, organized by Jammu Kashmir Rural Livelihoods Mission (JKRLM) at Boulevard, Srinagar, concluded here on Saturday.
The event was e-inaugurated by Chief Secretary, Arun Kumar Mehta, on 8th March at Jammu.
Umeed Women Haat is a rotational market linkage platform for 4.5 lakh rural SHG members to exhibit their products and connect directly with consumers as well as buyers.
During the exhibition, stalls with handlooms, handicrafts and non farm products had been installed. Besides, food stalls of various cuisines had also been made available within Umeed Haat and food was prepared by culinary artists, who had come from different parts of the division.
Speaking on the occasion, MD JKRLM, Dr Sehrish Asgar, said that “Umeed women’s Haat” is a women empowerment initiative by JKRLM to bring the rural women Self Help Group members under one platform enabling them exhibit their skills, sell their products and build connections with potential market players.
Dr Sehrish added that the organization trains women in different livelihood craftsmanship skills and gives them a platform too to market their products. Their stalls are entirely free and all their expenses including their stay, is borne by the Mission.
She informed that 45 SHG members promoted under JKRLM from both the divisions participated in this marketing fair, so far, registering cumulative business worth Rs 4 lakh.
Dr Sehrish said that Jammu and Kashmir has long been the producer of many traditional arts and crafts which is highly admired and valued around the world, however, absence of market linkage and non availability of direct (B2B) and (B2C) platform, these entrepreneurs could not make good earning due to exploitation by middlemen and retailers.
Mission Director said that Boulevard has been identified for the purpose as it witnesses a huge footfall of tourists throughout the day and we have received a huge response.
It is an exhibition that gives a picture of the rich culture and art of J&K and provides the SHG members, promoted under JKRLM, a platform to demonstrate their art and for the buyers it provides some great shopping choices. From handmade embroidery to paper-machie showpieces the exhibition has a unique amalgamation, she added.
She said that such events shall continue to be organized throughout the year providing a market to women artisans, producers and craft designers. It is also an opportunity for non locals to get to know about local art of rural Kashmir.
Mission Director also revealed that Umeed women’s Haat Jammu will be set up soon in Jammu.