Are you a fan of handicraft? Yes? Then let me tell you about the handicraft carnival that takes place every year in Odisha. Whether you love craft or not, you can still go there to shop for clothes, jewelry, and food.
It started 13 years back and happens every year. Almost 380 stalls are set up every year displaying a variety of craft items, food, and clothes. This fair is conducted by the state Handlooms, Textiles, and Handicraft departments. This year the 13th Toshali National Craft carnival took place and it ended on 13th January of this year. A total of 3.46 Crore rupees was spent for this fair. The department aims to earn about Rs. 22 crore-revenue from this event.
Toshali or tosali was an ancient city in the present day Odisha state in eastern India. It was the capital of the eastern province of the Maurya empire. Even today some scholars are trying to identify this ancient city with Dhauli which is 7 km away from the present capital of Odisha, Bhubaneswar. While others are inclined to identify this city with Shishupalgarh,5 km away from Bhubaneswar.
The vision of this carnival is to offer an open forum to artists and artisans for interaction. The main idea is to strengthen the position or status of the weavers and artisans who are economically weak by creating a market for their products. It is to preserve and nurture the tradition, its art forms, and handicrafts of India. It also serves as a beneficial example to make the newer generation learn and understand about the history and culture of our India.
What is this place?
Toshali handicraft mela is an event where one can learn about the skills, creative precise talent and hardwork involved in making the products.
In this, normally a food court having more than 30 food stalls are often set up by exclusive hotels and restaurants. It serves as a two way street between the sponsors and the people who went on to enjoy the carnival
Small swings and rides are often present in the play zone for the attraction and entertainment of young children. ATM counters are also present along with the first aid service and wheelchairs for senior citizens.
More about it
This carnival commences every day from 2 pm to 9 30 pm. Cultural programs often start at evening, by 6:30 pm. In these cultural programs, many eminent artists and troupes from Odisha and other states come together to put up their performances.
Many government educational institutions or organizations related to handloom, textiles, and handicrafts sectors such as National Institute of Fashion Technology, Bhubneswar, etc open their stalls for awareness and to address queries of the visitors. It is best for the students are in or wish to pursue a career in fashion or textile.
Government of India organizations such as National Handloom Development Corporation, Textiles Committee, Weavers’ service centre and the state tourism department also takes part in this carnival. Live demonstration on various craft activity is also conducted by students of Handicrafts training centre, SIDAC.
Every year around twenty lakh people visit this Toshali craft mela, and around twenty crore rupees worth of products are being sold in this carnival. It is perfect opportunity for advertisement, spreading awareness, business and trade. Organizing this mega event is normally too tough, still its worthy because of its glass clear motives to help in improving the lifestyles of artists and craftsmen.
One will absolutely enjoy it!