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KCCI welcomes Srinagar's recognition as World Craft City

07:51 AM Jun 26, 2024 IST | GK NEWS SERVICE
kcci welcomes srinagar s recognition as world craft city
Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI)
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Srinagar, June 25:  Kashmir Chamber of Commerce & Industry (KCCI) has expressed its gratitude and excitement following the World Craft Council's recommendation and subsequent issuance of the Certificate of Accreditation to Srinagar.

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In a statement, KCCI said that this significant accolade acknowledges Srinagar's successful meeting of the evaluation criteria for the World Craft City Program by the World Craft Council AISBL (International) for the year 2024.

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This accreditation celebrates the centuries-old craftsmanship of Kashmiri artisans, whose exceptional skills have produced masterpieces that have adorned the wardrobes of nobility, the wealthy, and the powerful across the globe for generations. The international recognition of their craftsmanship is a testament to their enduring excellence and dedication.

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It said that in April 2024, the World Craft Council Jury conducted an extensive visit to Kashmir to evaluate Srinagar's eligibility for this prestigious recognition. On April 17, 2024, the jury conducted detailed consultations with the KCCI at the School of Design, Kashmir Haat.

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"The World Craft Council Jury comprised Prof. Somesh Singh (India), WCC-International Entity Member; Sohan Kumar Jha (India), Senior Director of the National Crafts Museum and Hastkala Academy, WCC International Entity Member, Delhi; and Abhishek Kumar (India), Head of Craft Division, Advantage Designs Inc, WCC Jury Member, Delhi. Director Handicrafts & Handlooms, Kashmir Mehmood Ahmad Shah, and Salem Beg, Head of INTACH, JK Chapter, were also present."

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During the meeting, the KCCI team made a compelling case for Kashmir's inclusion in the council. They emphasized Srinagar's role as a hub of traditional Kashmiri handicrafts, producing a wide range of artefacts by skilled artisans. This sector is vital for the economic betterment and employment generation of a significant portion of the local population. The KCCI highlighted the importance of the World Craft Council's extensive network, which spans over 80 countries, and how this recognition could leverage the existing strengths and resources of Kashmir's craft production.

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KCCI also suggested that under the Cultural Exchange Program, Kashmiri artisans could be facilitated to participate in various global programs, enabling them to create contemporary designs catering to international tastes. They emphasized the need for artisan empowerment and proposed interventions by the World Craft Council to address social security issues and create vertical linkages between artisans, manufacturers, exporters, and global retail chains.

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KCCI President Javed Ahmad Tenga had assured the jury of KCCI's proactive role and commitment to utilizing all available resources to secure the World Craft Council accreditation.

KCCI commended Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha for his keen interest in the revival and development of Kashmir handicrafts. They also praised the vision and tireless efforts of Director Handicrafts Mehmood Ahmad Shah and INTACH Chief Salem Beg for their crucial roles in this achievement, the statement said.

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