Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Handlooms, Textiles & Handicrafts Department is going to organise the 15th Toshali National Craft Mela-2021 at Janata Maidan, Bhubaneswar from January 21 to February 4.
In this connection Smt. Padmini Dian, Minister HT&H today briefed the Media about the arrangements and other aspects of the mela. Smt. Dian said that Artisans, Weavers, Sculptors from all over the country will participate in this Crafts Mela & exhibit their traditional and contemporary handicraft and handloom products.
As an important cultural nerve centre of the country, Bhubaneswar hosts the Toshali National Crafts Mela at Janata Maidan every year. The crafts mela has already imprinted a unique place of its own in the country’s Annual Carnival Calendar and left an indelible impression in the minds of the peoples of our State.
Smt Dian said that the vision of the mela is to offer an open forum to artists, artisans and connoisseurs for interaction and to strengthen the position of the weavers and artisans who are economically deprived by creating a market for their products. Mela also aims to preserve and nurture the traditional art forms, handicrafts and handlooms of India and create awareness and educate the people on the skills and creative intricacies involved in making the products.
This year, the chief objective of organising the event is to provide marketing scope to the artisans/ weavers of the State as well as the Country because due to the COVID 19 restrictions, the artisans/ weavers are facing Himalayan difficulties for the marketing of their products. Keeping this in view and amid COVID 19 situation in the State, required measures are being taken for organising the Mela to facilitate marketing of products of the artisans and weavers within the parameters of COVID 19 guidelines specified by State Govt/ Central Govt.
This year the mela will accommodate 250 Handicraft & Handloom stalls out of which 80 weavers/artisans from different states of the country will be sponsored by DC (Handlooms) / DC (Handicrafts), GOI. Similarly, 110 artisans and 60 weavers of the state will be sponsored by DH & CI, Odisha and Directorate of Textiles and Handlooms, Odisha respectively.
Sufficient number of security personnel will be engaged in different blocks to maintain social distancing and ensure using masks and sanitiser. Proper care will be taken for sanitization of the mela ground at regular interval. Use of mask and social distancing are being made mandatory for exhibitors/ visitors and officials inside the mela ground. All the COVID 19 measures will be included in publicity items i.e hoardings/ standees etc for awareness of the visitors. A Special Committee is constituted taking high-level officials and staffs for supervising strict adherence of Covid 19 guidelines.
Like the previous year, the mela will be Accessible, Inclusive and Sustainable (AIS), a differently-abled & Senior Citizen friendly event. A special help desk with the provision of wheelchair, designated parking space will be arranged for smooth movement and visit of differently-abled visitors. There will be provision for providing assistance to the differently-abled visitors from 3 pm to 5 pm for visiting the Mela, Smt Dian said.
Smt Dian said that to avoid gathering of visitors, cultural programmes are not scheduled this year. and the mela will be opened every day from 02.00 PM to 9:00 pm.
All related logistics arrangement i.e. Fire brigade, Security, First Aid Service, Ambulance, ATM Counters, free lodging to artisans, Wheel Chair etc. will be available in the mela premises. The mela is proposed to be inaugurated by Hon’ble Chief Minister in the presence of Hon’ble Minister Handlooms, Textiles & Handicrafts, MP Bhubaneswar and MLAs Bhubaneswar at 6.00 pm on 21st January 2021 at Janata Maidan, Bhubaneswar. The mela is being organised by Handlooms, Textiles & Handicrafts Department in association with Development Commissioner (Handlooms), Ministry of Textiles, Govt. of India. State Institute for Development of Arts & Crafts (SIDAC), Gandamunda, Bhubaneswar an autonomous institution under Handlooms, Textiles & Handicrafts Department, Govt. of Odisha is implementing this mega National level Crafts mela under the active guidance of the Commissioner-cum-Secretary, HT & H Deptt.