Interesting items like jute footwear, vases, garments, aromatic soaps and fancy locks attractby
By Ankur Vadhera CHANDIGARH: Interesting artifacts from Jharkhand and West Bengal are the highlights at the States of India pavilion in the CII Chandigarh Fair running at the Parade Ground in Sector 17. A huge contingent from West Bengal is displaying all its wares at its stalls in the fair, which range from jute handbags, wallets, sandals, flip-flops, seashell paperweights, cotton sarees and fabrics etc. Jharkhand has khadi shirts, aromatic soaps and shampoos and wooden flower vases, while the Rajasthan and Goa stalls have decorative designeraarti thalis, coconut bowls and cutlery, pen-stands and salt and pepper dispensers and other eatables likegachakandpapad etc.
Jharkhand is a first-time participant at the fair. Talking to the media, while inaugurating the State of Jharkhand Pavillion on Friday,Mr Jainandu, the Chairman of Jharkhand State Khadi Board, shared : “Our state is participating for the 1sttime in the CII fair. Our organic tassar silk products are even being exported to several countries. We are supporting our tribals and rural artisans by providing them with a stipend of Rs 1,500 a month, besides helping them get a bank loan for pursuing their livelihood of traditional crafts and handicrafts,” he added. “Besides this, we also help in marketing and promotion of their handmade products, at exhibitions within India and abroad. The participation in the current CII Chandigarh Fair is one such initiative. Our 12 artisans and two big organizations are participating in this fair and all have really benefitted from the same. Nearly 1,25,000 people are engaged in the sericulture sector. Jharkhand is also the first state to implement the Swavlamban scheme of the Government of India,” he further shared.
The States of India pavilion is rally attracting crowds big-time. “West Bengal is a highly artistic state with a rich folk art culture,” says Rupa, who is a Bengali herself. “But it is the Jharkhand stalls that are the real surprise this time. Their wonderful artistic products are quite unique as well,” she felt.
In the Jharkhand pavilion, there are products ranging from aromatic soaps and shampoos to wooden artistic flower vases and decoration pieces of cement and marble mix with the outer covering of Plaster of Paris. Jute footwear and handbags are the rage in West Bengal stalls, with gents and ladies flip-flops priced at Rs 150. Some beautiful artificial flowers are selling for Rs 20 a piece and Rs 100 for a bunch of ten. Then, there are paperweights of seashells, magazine stands made of cotton grass and chunky necklaces. The popular Bengal Cotton sarees are wooing the female crowds in large numbers.
Jharkhand tribal Jewellery including necklace, rings, bangles, bracelets, earrings, ‘Kadhas’ are a real hit at the CII fair. “Their specialty is that they are made of German Silver and do not lose their shine. They are all handmade and range from Rs 150 – Rs 500”, informed Ms Tara Soni, an exhibitor from Jharkhand.
Mr Man Chand Jhabarmal, another exhibitor from Jharkhand was very delighted at the response he has received at CII Fair. Beautiful Flower vases, pots, flower stands, wind chimes and decoration pieces made of Terracotta with wooden look are in high demand from day 1.“Our articles with wooden look and low price range of just Rs 200 – Rs 450, depending upon the size, are attracting the visitors tremendously. We use wet colour and then heat the items at extremely high temperatures to give it a wooden look. People are not able to believe that it is made of terracotta and not wood. So they are really loving our products”, delightfully shared Mr Jhabarmal.
Jharkhand Khadi Board is here with attractive Tassar Silk sarees, kurtis and suits in Bengali and jaamdaani prints with kantha work, which the ladies of the region are really loving. Our plain and designer khadi kurtas, shirts, suits and ‘pyjamas’, both for ladies and gents are also attracting the crowd because of their uniqueness and purity, shared Mr Manoj Sharma from Jharkhand Khadi Board.
Stalls from Jaipur, Rajasthan have some very artistic stone-claddedaarti thalis, besides some ear rings and studs. Marble statues are also on display. Pickles,papads, and some sweets and savouries likegachakandmongraare tempting the taste buds of visitors. Goa has some cutlery and soup bowls and spoons made out of coconut coverings. Coffee mugs, pen stands and salt-pepper containers are some other items at the Goa stalls which are attracting the visitors.
An interesting section at the fair is Social Expo, where NGOs and self-help groups are displaying their products, in association with NABARD.
“NABARD has associated with CII in this fair and financed the participation of various NGOs and Self Help Groups from the state. Our aim is to give them a platform to promote and market their hand made products at the CII Chandigarh Fair. We thank CII for partnering with us”, sharedMr K Sayed Ali, CGM Haryana, NABARD.
There are women’s groups selling pickles andpapads. A group from Kurukshetra is selling 24 varieties of pickles for Rs 80/ kg bottles. Then, there is Vatika – a school for deaf-and-dumb children selling aromatic candles anddiyas(an apt item for Diwali season) made by middle and high school students. Artisans from the region are selling phulkari items from Punjab, pickles from Haryana, and wooden decoration pieces like pen-stands with clocks from Dalhousie.
Then, there are wonderful antique items like marble fountain stands, antique locks in the shapes of lions, fishes, horses etc and old British clocks and gramophone vinyl records with loud speaker, garden chairs of wrought iron and wood from Fatima Naaz Collection and Anmol Rattan.