Govt To Document Goan Artisans, Handicrafts

Goan artisans and their handicrafts will soon be documented by the state government for socio-economic and tourism purposes. The Goa Handicrafts Rural and Small Scale Industries Development Corporation Ltd (GHRSSIDC) says the idea is to make these professions economically viable, while also adding to Goa’s tourism attractions. “These will be categorised into native handicrafts and assimilated handicrafts,” GHRSSIDC managing director (MD) Nikhil Desai said.

“The compiled databank of Goan artisans will include their economic status and the business status of their occupation. For instance we will scrutinize the economic status of a potter and check whether his business is flourishing or languishing. If it is languishing, we need to know the reasons why, so we can find a solution for it,” Desai said.

“Pottery could be under threat due to competition from plastic wares, or if the potter has not upgraded his skills, technology or design,” he added.

The GHRSSIDC is already in the process of completing a databank of traditional jewellery, coconut craft, sea shell craft, bamboo craft and carved wooden items.

When asked how the corporation sought to make these traditional occupations economically viable for an artisan’s sustenance, Desai replied that the first step is to compile a databank. “It will be like a census – a measurement tool. We will know our steps ahead only after we get this information in hand.”

The MD further said that the handicraft market in India is thriving. “Exports of handicrafts from India are about 10,000 crore, while the market in India is around 20,000 crore,” he said.

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