The President of India Pranab Mukherjee who officially inaugurated the 27th Surajkund International craft fair at Surajkund, Faridabad, Saturday said that International cultural fairs like Surajkund is the platform to show India's treasured diversity.
The Surajkund international craft fair that began from Friday, was scheduled to officially inaugurated on Feb 02 by President of India as Pranab was not available on the very first day.
In his inaugural address, the President said that Surajkund fair has become a sumptuous feast of colour, festivity, a manifestation of our nation's spirit and pride in its wealth of artistic talent and skills. This would be an occasion to showcase India's treasured diversity - its finest handlooms, handicrafts, fragrances and flavourful cuisine.
"It is an embodiment of our aesthetics and our skilled craftsmanship. Our handicrafts and traditional arts are a highly decentralised activity, inspired by the local milieu and, in every case, based on local traditions, using local material and resources. These art forms have sustained generations, providing sustainable livelihood and socio-economic development at the grassroots. The Indian handicrafts industry has, over the years, contributed significantly to our nation's foreign exchange earnings. This sector has always been a source of empowerment of women, youth and the disabled," Pranab said.
He hoped that the success of this event would motivate other States of India to organise similar melas.
The President said handicrafts and traditional arts represent our Indian way of life. The range of our nation's creativity is as diverse as its colourful people and their crafts.
The Mela was first hosted at a very modest scale - on a small ground of about three acres in 1987. Today it spreads over 40 acres with the participation of crafts persons and weavers from all States of India and as many as 20 participant countries.
The president congratulated the Haryana government for organising the 15-day extravaganza.
Surajkund is the historical place where a pond is situated amid Aravali mountains, which was built by king Suraj pal, one of the Tomar chieftains in the 10th Centaury.
The cultural and craft fair was first time 1987 and is celebrated every year during the spring season, from February 1 to 15, at Surajkund located in Haryana.
The fair is aimed to give an exposure to the traditional art of handloom and handicraft of the country.
Traditional craftsman (artists, painters, weavers and sculptors) from all parts of the country participate in this annual celebration.
This event has been a great success year after year and helps to promote the traditional art at an International level.
The fortnight-long fair, which showcases traditional crafts from all over India and leading artisans, will continue till Feb 15 (9.30 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. daily).
--With Agencies Inputs--