Bhubaneswar: The 15th Toshali National Craft Mela- 2021 will be organized by the Handlooms, Textiles & Handicrafts (HT&H) Department of the State Governemnt at Janata Maidan, here from January 21 to February 4.
“Artisans, weavers, sculptors from all over the country will participate in the mela and exhibit their traditional and contemporary handicraft and handloom products,” said Padmini Dian, Minister HT&H briefing reporters today about the arrangements and other aspects of the mela.
Dian said that, as 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 indelible impression in the minds of the peoples of our State, she added.
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, which are economically derived by creating 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, she added.
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 marketing 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 Government/ Central Government.
This year the mela will accommodate 250 handicraft and 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 sanitizer.
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 like 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 previous year, the mela will be accessible, inclusive and sustainable (AIS), a differently- abled and senior citizen friendly event.
A special help desk with provision of wheel chair, 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, Dian said.
Dian said that to avoid gathering of visitors, cultural programmes are not scheduled this year, and the mela will be opened every day from 02.00PM to 9:00pm.
All related logistics arrangement like Fire brigade, Security, First Aid Service, Ambulance, ATM Counters, free lodging to artisans, wheelchair etc. will be available in the mela premises.
The mela is proposed to be inaugurated by the Chief Minister at 6.00pm on January 21 at Janata Maidan.