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Celebrating spring
Spring is the season of freshness and is celebrated by Dastkar, an organization that works with craftspeople all over India
DASTKAR, AN organization working with crafts and craftspeople all over India, has joined hands with the Centre for Cultural Resources and Training (CCRT), to organize and celebrate the season of spring. Crafts mela, named as Dastkar Basant Bazaar, is being celebrated as the cultural festival, Virasat-Kamaladevi, in the honour of Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay, mentor of the post independence Indian crafts movement.
 
This festival began at the exotic gardens of the CCRT in Dwarka, New Delhi on 12 February, 2011 and will be there till 20 February, 2011. The timing of the festival is from 11am-8pm, which are quite suitable for all.
Basant, as known by all, is the time for a fresh beginning and at this time nature is also at its best. It is the time, when we won’t stop the appraisals for the verdant nature and would certainly find oneself closest to the Mother Nature. In this festival too, one would find all the freshness related to the craft work.
One may find a long list of items at the bazaar, raniging from decorative juthis of Rajasthan to the fascinating tribal jewellery of Orissa. Silk sarees from Banaras and Bhagalpur, are not far behind. One would also find stoles and shawls from Kutch and Uttarakhand which is an eye-catching material for ladies. Also, on display is the cane furniture from Assam and sujni, Kantha embroideries from Bengal , whereas Bihar is showcasing Madhubani and Phad paintings. This festival is not far from nature too as it has organic and herbal soaps, oils and food stuffs, all on sale for its consumers.
 
As a leading society, working with crafts and craftspeople, Dastkar has been dedicated in bringing together rural producers and urban consumers and is also working in promoting the beauty and potential of the Indian handicraft. Prices here are quite complimentary and the stuff here is sold by the craftspeople themselves.
 
The CCRT has been emphasizing on using traditional craft as educational tools. It has been working on its promotion and preservation and has also established many cultural centers around its headquarters in Dwarka.
 
Dastkar, shares a warm relationship with craftspeople of around 200 in number in 18 states. It also provides them with full support by providing them with training at designing and product development throughout the year. It also aims at breaking the barrier which is in between the craftspeople and the urban market. This will, in turn, help in reviving and revitalizing both, the craft and the community and also in bringing them both close to each other.
 
These Dastkari bazaars are a step towards this aim, which will definitely come true one day or the other, if such development keeps on with the pace. So next time when you visit a crafts mela do take a look at the culture which these small pieces bear in it and feel the true India.
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