Old designs, new innovations will make handicraft products saleable

CM announces sponsorship of four students to CDI every year 
Highlighting the importance of handicrafts in State’s economy, Chief Minister Mr. Omar Abdullah Thursday called for preservation of rare handicrafts designs and use of new innovative techniques to make products more saleable. He called for providing impetus to this sector to ensure welfare of thousands of people linked to this activity directly and indirectly.
The Chief Minister said this while inspecting the Craft Development Institute (CDI), near Bagh-e-Ali-Mardan-Khan, here today.
Calling for preservation and protection of rare handicraft designs by utilizing modern technology, Mr. Abdullah said CDI could play a vital role in this endeavour and open new vistas of handicrafts development in the State.
The Chief Minister said handicrafts produced in the Valley are matchless and sought-after items all over the world. “We should nurture and help the sector to grow in an organized and scientific manner, utilizing modern techniques to open new employment opportunities and economic avenues for the youth,” he added.
The Chief Minister visited various departments of the institute and evinced keen interest in designs of papier mache, wood-carving, metal works, chain-stitch and leather and willow works created by the Institute. He also interacted with students undergoing MBA in Craft Management. The students explained various projects they were working on and requested for sponsorship of meritorious students to the institute by the State Government.
Responding to their request, the Chief Minister announced annual sponsorship of four meritorious students to the institute for MBA in Craft Management and Entrepreneur Leadership Programme, the first of its kind in the country. He said young boys and girls under training at the Centre could become role models for others in the field of skill development and capacity-building.
Director, CDI, Mr. M. S. Farooqi apprised the Chief Minister about the functioning of the institute and presented a resume of its activities. He said CDI aims to act as a catalyst of change by acquainting craftsmen with new market trends on one hand and preserving ancient designs on the other. The CDI endeavours to renew relevance, interest and economic potential of handicrafts sector and safeguarding its stature, he added.
CDI, Srinagar, is an autonomous institute established by the Union Ministry of Textiles. It is managed by an Executive Committee, headed by Principal Secretary, Industries and Commerce. It offers an integrated set of programmes that provide a holistic approach to learning, skill enhancement, training and support required for revival of the handicraft sector. It also offers two flagship programmes of craft management and textile designs for the students. The programmes are based on a multi-disciplinary concept of interfacing applied aspects of design, management and technology in an integrated fashion within the overall context of handicrafts.


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