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CEC inaugurates 10 days Handicrafts Exhibition-cum-Live Demonstration

Leh,August 12, (Scoop News)- The 10 days Handicrafts Exhibition-cum-Live Demonstration was inaugurated by CEC, LAHDC Dr. Sonam Dawa Lonpo at Indoor Stadium Katmochay organised jointly by Hill Council Leh and Directorate of Handicraft J&K Government. Dorje Motup EC (Edu), Tsering Wangdus EC (agri), Tsering Sangdup EC (Handicrafts), Mumtaz Hussain EC (S&AH), Councilors, Joint Director Handicrafts, Srinagar, AD Handicraft Leh Sonam Gurmet, district officers and artisans from different villages were present the occasion.

Addressing the gathering CEC said that Kashmir has a rich culture of art and crafts and despite Ladakh so closely connected to Kashmir this richness couldn’t be passed on to the Ladakhi people. He said that it could perhaps because of the hard work and dedication on part of Ladakhis to learn the art and crafts existed in the Valley or may be there has not been a vision on part of government to think in this direction. He added that Ladakh too has its traditional art and crafts but people lack skill refinement and stressed on the need to revive and promote ancestral crafts with innovative modifications. He directed AD Handicrafts to take local artisans for exposure tours to the Valley and get trainers from there to enhance local productivity in terms of quality and design.
Dr. Dawa said that skill is a precious knowledge that can be learned, taught and propagated without any high educational background and it can proof a good source to earn livelihood. He urged upon the unemployed youths especially girls to take advantage of various schemes of handicraft and handloom and to use the available local resource for a good income generation. CEC informed that the present Council is committed to uplift and improve handloom and handicraft sectors in the district considering which LAHDC has increased the district budget for these sectors by Rs.5 lakh and is working on projects to open market facilities for local artisans at prime tourist destinations. He also invited the artisans from Kashmir to Ladakh to sell their products. “Our doors are always open for you. We pray for the situation to get better in the Valley and feel free to market your products during tourist season in Leh,” says Dr. Dawa.
Speaking on the occasion Joint Director, Handicrafts, Srinagar Nazir Ahmed said that the objective of this exhibition is to give opportunity to artisans from Kashmir, Kargil and Leh to display and sell their products. He gave assurance to give artisans of Ladakh its due share in improving and promoting art and crafts based skill development through various government schemes and trainings. He requested Hill Council support in conceptualising the project of hut in Leh, Ladakh to held routine exhibition like in Srinagar, Jammu and Delhi. He also expressed hope that the implementation of Artisan Credit Card by Council this year in Leh district will prove highly beneficial for the local artisans to initiate, improve and expand their skill based business.
AD Tourism in his speech said that it is for the second consecutive year this exhibition is being organised and the purpose is to provide an open platform of interaction for artisans from Valley, Kargil and Leh to share and learn from eachother. He informed that with the intervention of LAHDC the Directorate Handicraft has committed to give 100 modern carpet looms to Leh district for free distribution among eligible carpet weavers. He made a mention of ACC under which artisans will get a 10% interest subsidy on loan of Rs. 1 lakh and less and urged all the artisans to avail this scheme and take maximum benefit.
A scintillating traditional cultural program was also presented by CATS group on the occasion. CEC appreciated the cultural troop for their innovative idea of presenting dance item based on the theme of artisans and gave assurance to promote all sorts of art including dance and music in coming times.

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