LUCKNOW: Come Diwali and UP government is set to serve a major blow to China. Yogi Adityanath government has laid out a plan to outsmart the dragon this Diwali by making it free from products imported from China. Roadmap is prepared to meet the countrywide demand of designer diyas (earthen lamps) and traditional Ganesh-Lakshmi idols made in Uttar Pradesh.
In a bid to brighten the trade prospects of potters and sand artists and also to open new vistas for lakhs of those migrants who have this skill, the UP government has prepared a blueprint to absorb them in making products used in Diwali and supply them across the country.
“We are set to provide better quality products than China's and we are confident to capture the national market beating the imported Chinese goods in the competition,” said a senior official in the MSME department.
The plan would roll out in July. To do away with the Chinese products, the UP government is listing the potters and sand artists. The sources claimed that the State Khadi and Cottage Industry Board will organise training sessions for the listed artists from across the country using modern techniques.
Initially, the pilot project would be implemented in three districts - Varanasi, Gorakhpur, and Lucknow. The official sources said besides training, the artists from the three districts and those associated with state’s ‘Maati Kala Board’ would be given dye and furnishing machine along with raw material free of cost to facilitate making of designer earthen lamps, pots, sand utensils and idols to match the global standards.
Moreover, in a parallel plan, special workshops to impart training in terracotta art form would be organised in Gorakhpur which is famous for the same. Artists, sculptors, craftsmen from all over the country would flock Gorakhpur next month to learn the terracotta art from the local artists and take the technology to their states.
The Gorakhpur terracotta art is a globally acclaimed art form with GI (Geographical Indication) certification.
“It has been decided that a national level workshop under the aegis of the 'Mati Kala Board' will be organised in Gorakhpur for technology transfer to other artists, craftsmen and the potters for making designer statues of Ganesh-Laxmi,” said a senior official in the export promotion cell of MSME department. “This step is also directed to bolster the phenomenon of ‘Atma Nirbhar Bharat’ of PM Modi,” said the official.
The workshop, organised by State Maati Kala Board, is likely to proceed giving employment to more than 50,000 people, mainly the skilled migrants, said the official. The board is affiliated to State Khadi Vikas Board.
In order to boost the livelihood for the potters, the Mati Kala Board had been inviting and entrusting them with making earthen lamps in lakhs for Deepotsava, an annual affair in Ayodhya, in which CM Yogi also participates on Diwali eve. Last year, five lakh diyas were lit in the temple town on Deepostsava and it was a Guinness record.