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Surajkund International Crafts mela begins today

The 31st edition of the 15-day international fair will be inaugurated by Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. Egypt is the partner country and Jharkhand is the theme state this year.

delhi Updated: Feb 01, 2017 12:10 IST
Prabhu Razdan
Prabhu Razdan
Hindustan Times, Surajkund
Surajkund International Mela,Surajkund fair,surajkund mela
Artistes from Jharkhand perform a traditional state dance during the press preview of Surajkund Mela at Faridabad on Tuesday.(Virendra Singh Gosain/HT Photo)

For those wanting to celebrate and soak in the heritage Indian crafts there is good news. The 31st edition of Surajkund International Crafts Mela starts from Wednesday amid tight security.

To be inaugurated by Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar, the carnival is a 15-day affair.

Artistes from Haryana performing during the press preview of Surajkund Mela at Faridabad on Tuesday. (Virendra Singh Gosain/HT Photo)

Over 20 countries are participating in the event with Egypt as a partner country this year and Jharkhand as the theme state. Every year, one country becomes the partner country and an Indian state is selected to set the theme of the mela.

“The Surajkund Crafts Mela was upgraded to an international level in 2013. This year more than 20 countries are participating. Zimbabwe, Tanzania, Tunisia, Mongolia and South Africa are the first timers,” said VS Kundu, additional chief secretary, Haryana Tourism and chairman of the Surajkund Mela Authority said at a press conference on Tuesday.

Artistes from Jharkhand perform during the press preview of Surajkund Mela at Faridabad on Tuesday. (Virendra Singh Gosain/HT Photo)

With Jharkhand being the theme state, it will showcase its unique culture and rich heritage, said Rahul Sharma, secretary Jharkhand Tourism.

Artists from Jharkhand have constructed a permanent commemorative gate replicating the Maluti Temple in the state. Apart from it, there are five temporary gates displaying the state symbols of Jharkhand.

Hundreds of artists from Haryana, Jharkhand and countries such as Egypt, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan will enliven the mood of the visitors with their performances.

Preparations for the 15-day Surajkund Mela at Faridabad. (Virendra Singh Gosain/HT Photo)
Preparations on for Surajkund Mela at Faridabad. Over 20 countries will be participating in the event. (Virendra Singh Gosain/HT Photo)

“The mela ground is spread over 40.5 acres and houses about 1,010 work huts for craftspersons and multi-cuisine food court consisting of 36 food stalls,” said Sameer Pal, managing director of Haryana Tourism Corporation.

Pal said the visitors can relish mouthwatering cuisines, including authentic flavours from Jharkhand, Haryana, and Punjab along with Lebanese and Chienese food. “We are expecting about 15 lakh visitors at the mela,” Pal said.

For those short on cash too, there is reason to cheer. “To ensure 100% cashless transactions, Dena Bank, the official banking partner has been asked to provide 100 point-of-sale machines, a dedicated bank branch with two ATMs and 6 mobile ATM vans. E-wallets have also been roped in to ensure hassle-free transactions this year,” Kundu said.

First Published: Feb 01, 2017 07:30 IST