SRINAGAR — The Government of Jammu and Kashmir has notified 21 more crafts from Kashmir as “Notified Handicrafts”, thereby acknowledging the scores of artisans associated with the crafts.
Notification of these crafts was a long pending demand of the artisans associated with these crafts and shall enable the artisans to gain a sense of pride and identity.
It shall also enable the department to register the artisans in the erstwhile left-out crafts which shall in turn ensure the preservation and protection of these traditional skills from being lost over time. By registering these artisans, their knowledge and expertise shall be documented, ensuring their techniques and craftsmanship are safeguarded for future generations.
Besides, the artisans shall gain access to various government support programs which will help in increasing the number of genuine artisan community and such a measure will extend the benefits of the government schemes to the hitherto unrecognized artisan segments of the society by which they can avail the Artisan/Weavers Credit scheme, Karkhandar scheme, Assistance under the Cooperative Act, MUDRA Scheme and educational benefits for their kin.
The artisans shall be brought at par with other registered artisans to open up avenues for artisans to showcase and market their products to a wider audience by participating in exhibitions, trade fairs, and cultural events hosted by the department where they can promote and sell their crafts.
Notification of these crafts comes at a time when the Department of Handicrafts and Handloom Kashmir is pitching hard for Geographical Indication (GI) of all the indigenous crafts of Kashmir.
The crafts which have been notified include Sozni Embroidery, Staple Embroidery, Khatamband, Paper Pulp, Kharadi, Glazed Pottery, Katas, Copperware Engraving, Copperware Sakhta, Pottery, Calligraphy, Painting, Handicrafts Furniture, Handmade Aromatics, Handmade Soap, Filigree, Mosaic Craft, Wagguv, Shikara, Willow Bat, Innovative Crafts. Besides the 21 crafts of Kashmir, 10 crafts of Jammu have also been declared as “Notified Crafts”.
Director Handicrafts and Handloom Kashmir expressed his satisfaction with the inclusion of these crafts as Notified Crafts under the provision of the Jammu and Kashmir Handicrafts Quality Control Act 1978 which would address the demand of a wide sector of artisans who are associated with these crafts.
“We are taking several initiatives in reaching out to the artisans in Kashmir. Proactive marketing, curbs on fake handicraft products, special incentives to artisans, and operationalizing of GI-system for Handicrafts are some of the major ongoing initiatives that are underway,” he said.