EYE OPENER on 16 Jan 2014
Eye Opener ratified BIBS’ claim that we take classroom learning to the fields. The students did a detailed study on their chosen field and the field work turned out just as interesting and exciting revealing to them a world of ingenuity, diligence, labour for bread and life and survival in the face of a ruthless world where industry and technology has left barely any room for hand made products and their traditional methods and tools they work with.
But these crafts have won their place as sought after articles possession of which makes the owners proud. These artifacts are now for the elitist society that adorn their livings and embellish their persons with these hand crafted goods. And so are these handicrafts here to stay after they made a glorious return rising from the onslaught of the industrial revolution in the 19th century.
India has been engaged in all kinds of art and craft making. It did receive a jolt when machine made goods made their way into the market. But , especially after independence each of these crafts were revived with the Khadi and Village Board set up to help the poor artisans and craftsmen, and several co operatives were formed. Though now flourishing, the craftsmen themselves are still poor. They whose work sells by the lakhs earn only a few thousand from it. Government and other non- profiteering organizations must come forward to help them. Their survival is of utmost importance to us and to their crafts. More Guilds and societies under the government auspices have to be established, and Government has to buy their goods at prices which can give them reasonable earnings. It is a well known fact that these handicrafts sell well throughout the world and are marks of snob appeal. Though they are made by poor artisans the goods themselves are far from it. If we wish to keep our traditions and heritage alive we shall have to do something worthwhile for these craftsmen and their crafts. Also they are good foreign exchange earners.
The First Year students were divided into four groups, namely Mighty Mauryans, Majestic Mughals, Immortal Spartans and the Chivalrous Suryavanshis. Each Team selected a particular craft and the place where it is made. Students worked in teams and did a research work on their chosen products. The factors were taken into account and their availability, procurement and cost estimated. A deep study of the socio economic and demographic of the particular chosen area was made. Subsequently a Business Plan was drawn. With all the paper work ready a few students paid pre visits only to assess the viability of visiting those places as in a Team and getting the shy and inhibited artisans to do the talking.
All set ready the ground work was done on 16 January 2014. The Program was as follow
Team Craft Place Mentor
Majestic Mughals clay work (krisnanagar) Abir & Sulakshana/Sanjukta
Mighty Mauryans solawood work (Burdwan) Kankana & Ayan
Immortal Spartans handloom Samudragarh (Burdwan) Anindya and Suprio