Curtains go up on the 32nd Surajkund International Crafts Mela-2018

Faridabad : ( sharma) Addressing a galaxy of mediapersons at the Chaupal, Surajkund Mela Ground, Faridabad, Smt. Rashmi Verma,Secretary, Ministry of Tourism, Government of India and Chairperson, Surajkund Mela Authority stated that the 32nd Surajkund International Crafts Mela-2018 will be inaugurated by Yogi Adityanath, Hon’ble Chief Minister, Uttar Pradesh on 2nd February, 2018 at 11.00 am. Manohar Lal, Hon’ble Chief Minister, Haryana will preside over the function in the gracious presence of Ram Bilas Sharma, Tourism, Hospitality, Education, & Languages, Technical Education, Archeology & Museums Minister, Haryana; Prof. Rita Bahuguna Joshi, Hon’ble Tourism, Women Welfare, Family Welfare Mother and Child Welfare Minister, Uttar Pradesh and H.E. Mrs. Samarguil Adamkulova, Ambassador of Kyrgyz Republic in India, Krishan Pal Gurjar, Minister of State for Social Justice & Empowerment, Government of India; Vipul Goel, Industries Minister, Haryana; Seema Trikha, MLA, Badkhal, Mool Chand Sharma, MLA, Ballabhgarh, Jagdish Chopra, Chairman, Haryana Tourism Corp., and other distinguished dignitaries.

    The Surajkund Crafts Mela was hosted for the first time in 1987 to showcase richness and diversity of the handicrafts, handlooms and the cultural heritage of India. Jointly hosted by the Surajkund Mela Authority and Haryana Tourism in collaboration with the Union Ministries of Tourism, Textiles, Culture, External Affairs and Government of Haryana, this festival has come to occupy a place of pride and prominence on the international tourism calendar for its display of crafts, culture & cuisine of India in aesthetically created ambience.

    Vijai Vardhan, Addl. Chief Secretary, Tourism, Government of Haryana and Vice Chairman, Surajkund Mela Authority stated that besides attracting over a million visitors each year, the Mela has also helped in reviving the heritage crafts of India. Considering the popularity of the Mela, this year, its duration has been increased from 15 days to 17 days to accommodate three weekends instead of two weekends.  The Mela will now start on 2nd February and close on 18th February. Keeping pace with digital India initiative, the Mela entry tickets are available on online portal, For offline tickets, counters increased on Gate No 1 for smooth entry. Vardhan further stated that Four acres of parking area added between Gate 1 & 2 for smooth traffic & parking. ‘Street Art Painting’, made by famous artists from Kolkota, leading from Hotel Rajhans to mid axis of the Mela ground is the major attraction this year. A free ferry service for visitors has been extended throughout the Mela period from nearest areas of Faridabad and Delhi Metro stations in the vicinity.  This year, 28 countries have confirmed their participation as against 23 countries last year. 14 countries will present their cultural performances as against 7 last year. More than 325 Foreign Participants are participating out of which 82 are Artisans. Total Internal area of Mela is 42.5 Acres. Around 100 Areas of adjoining land is used for parking facilities. 1071 Workhuts offered to Artisans as against 1008 last year. Entry at Gate No 2 (Kerala Gate) is widened for smooth entry to visitors. Subtle Ambience is created with Mega size Gates, Props & Features. Sufficient number of Permanent overhead Signage are put for convenience of Visitors & Location Maps are strengthened to help visitors’ identity locations. Area of Apna Ghar of Haryana is extended to facilitate smooth movement of crowd. Public Conveniences, Toilets are increased adequately. The Concession on Mela tickets for School Students coming in groups on weekdays, War Widows, Freedom Fighter, Serving Soldiers, Divyangjan is same as last year.

Sameer Pal Srow, Managing Director, Haryana Tourism Corporation and Chief Administrator, Surajkund Mela Authority stated that this year, lot of enthusiasm is shown by the participants from foreign countries, which include participants from Partner Nation—Kyrgyz Republic.

Uttar Pradash is ‘Theme State’ of this year’s Surajkund International Crafts Mela, which is showcasing its unique culture and rich heritage in an impressive manner. Uttar Pradesh has constructed a permanent commemorative structure; replica of famous Banaras ke Ghat near Gate No 1 and Kumbh Dwar near Main Choupal besides constructing a number of temporary structures like Ayodhaya Dwar situated near Gate no 5, Apna Ghar of Uttar Pradesh to house a family from weaver family from Banaras, Tourism and Information Pavilion besides number of other gates, props & structures.

        To enliven the visitors’ mood, scintillating performances will be presented by international folk artists from Turkey, Morocco, Thailand, Syria, Srilanka, Tanzania, Niger, Nepal, Egypt, Sough Africa, Afghanistan, New Zealand, Maldives, Cambodia, Mauritius, Uganda, Ukraine, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Lebanon, Kenya, Tunisia, Madagascar, Russia and Kyrgyz Republic. A variety of dance forms during Day Performances will bestaged by folk artistes of North Zone Cultural Centre and other Zonal Cultural Centres, like Haryanavi Dances, Bhangra & Gidda by Punjab Police Group, Banchari, Kala Jadu, Kachi Ghori, Been Party, Nagara Party.

       Enthralling evening cultural performances during the Mela fortnight will entertain the visitors to the hilt. Enjoy rib-tickling Hasya Kavi Sammelan by renowned poets like Padamshri Surender Sharma & others, renouned Bhojpuri singer Malini Awasthi, performance by Shujat Hussain Khan, WOW Womania Folklores band,  Sufi Qawwalis and songs of Golden era by Mrs Ranju Prasad & Group, Vocalist Dr. Rinku Kalia, SAJDA by Padamjet Sherawat, Kathak by Ms. Elisha Deep Garg and Sunny Shishodya, Punjabi singer Shankar Sahni, Sufiana songs by famous Nijami Brothers and shows of Uttar Pradesh catch all this at the Chaupal from 6.00 pm onwards every evening.

       The Mela ground is spread over 42.5 acres of land and houses about 1071 work huts for craftspersons and a multi-cuisine Food Court consisting of 36 Food Stalls, which is immensely popular amongst visitors. This year, visitors can relish mouth-watering delicacies including authentic flavours of Theme State Uttar Pradesh and Partner Nation Kyrgyz Republic.Also, state-owned Institutes of Hotel Management of Faridabad and Panipat would dish out various ethnic delicacies of Haryana in particular.

        A family each from Haryana and Uttar Pradesh are going to showcase the lifestyle and living trends of their respective states in specially-created ‘Apna Ghar’.

      The Mela is open from February 2-18, 2018, daily from 10.30 am-8.30 pm


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