State's NRI forum to promote handicrafts in India, abroad

The Non-Resident Indian Forum, Karnataka, constituted by the state government, will work towards promoting handicrafts from the state across the globe by collaborating with Kannada associations abroad.

NRI Forum deputy chairperson Arathi Krishna told reporters in Bengaluru on Wednesday that the forum will take up the initiative on the request of the Karnataka State Handicrafts Development Corporation (KSHDC).

The forum has been constituted to “forge a symbiotic relationship between Karnataka and its diaspora”.

Arathi said she will speak to associations formed by Non-Resident Kannadigas (NRK) in various countries and work out a roadmap for promotion of art and crafts from the state, abroad.

Arathi said she will also speak to officials of the Ministry of External Affairs and cultural attache in various Indian embassies in this regard.

KSHDC chairperson Kamalamma said demonetisation of high denomination currency notes has resulted in a 30% fall in earnings of artisans in the state. “There is an urgent need to make our handicrafts available to more customers in both domestic and international markets,” she said.

Kamalamma said she has written to Forest Minister Ramanath Rai to take steps to increase the availability of raw materials like sandalwood and rosewood for artisans.

In a letter to Minister of State for External Affairs V K Singh, copies of which were released to the press, Arathi has sought that the member secretary of the forum (an officer of
KAS cadre) be given the power to attest educational certificates to Non-Resident Kannadigas.

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