Chandigarh, 02 February 2024 – President of India, Smt. Droupadi Murmu today inaugurated the 37th Surajkund International Crafts Fair-2024. Haryana Governor Sh Bandaru Dattatreya and Chief Minister Sh Manohar Lal also attended the event.
Following the inauguration, the President commended all teams involved for the successful organization of this fair, which has been organised since 1987. He specifically lauded Haryana Chief Minister Sh Manohar Lal and his team for their efforts in organizing this year’s event.
Highlighting the Republic of Tanzania as the partner country of this year’s fair, she informed the significance of cultural exchanges, which were discussed during her meetings with Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan in October last year. She said that visitors to the fair will have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the vibrant and colorful arts and crafts of Tanzania, including wood carving, pottery, and weaving. It is a wonderful platform to showcase Tanzanian dance, music and cuisine, in which we can also glimpse some Indian influence due to centuries of people-to-people contact between India and the East African coast. The participation of Tanzania as a partner nation in this fair highlights India’s partnership with the African Union.
Mrs. Droupadi Murmu highlighted the rich art and tradition of Gujarat, the partner state of this year’s fair, as something truly worth experiencing. The diverse and vibrant art forms of the state will be showcased through the skilled craftsmen and artists representing various regions of Gujarat. She also noted that the North Eastern Handicrafts and Handloom Development Corporation Limited is the cultural partner of this year’s fair, further enriching the cultural tapestry of the event. Mrs. Murmu expressed appreciation for the craftsmen who have diligently preserved the artistic heritage of the country, emphasizing that their dedication deserves commendation.
She said that a trade worth more than Rs 20 crore is expected during this fair, which is a huge platform from the economic point of view for the craftsmen and handloom traders.
During the inauguration, the President visited Haryana’s Apna Ghar Pavilion, where she received detailed information about the instruments showcasing Haryanvi culture. She also interacted with artisans while exploring the stalls representing Gujarat, the fair’s theme state. In addition, she took interest in the cultural styles showcased by participating countries and regions, offering encouragement.
Surajkund International Crafts Fair carved a niche in the global tourist calendar – Governor Bandaru Dattatreya
Speaking on this occasion, Haryana Governor Sh Bandaru Dattatreya hailed today as a historic milestone for the state of Haryana, underscoring the significant presence of President Smt. Draupadi Murmu, which has added a new dimension of grandeur to the fair. With her attendance, the day has been etched into the annals of Haryana’s history. Governor Dattatreya said that this year’s fair showcases Gujarat as the theme state, renowned for its cultural diversity and rich civilization, while Tanzania serves as the partner nation, which has the deep-rooted ties with India. He expressed hope that such collaborative events would further strengthen bilateral relations between the nations.
The Governor also highlighted the Surajkund International Fair’s prominent status on the international tourist calendar, noting its evolution into a highly anticipated annual event that consistently achieves success. Last year alone, approximately 14 lakh tourists from India and abroad attended the fair. This year’s 37th edition promises even greater diversity and cultural exchange, with participation expected from artists and craftsmen representing about 50 countries, he added.
Surajkund International Crafts Fair became a symbol of Haryana identity – Chief Minister Manohar Lal
Haryana Chief Minister Sh Manohar Lal extended heartfelt gratitude to President Smt. Droupadi Murmu on behalf of the people of the state for gracing Haryana with her presence. He underscored the historical significance of Surajkund, constructed by King Surajpal of the Tomar dynasty, situated at the foothills of the Aravalli range. Shaped like the rising sun and built in Roman style, Surajkund symbolizes progress, with the International Handicraft Fair, now in its 37th year, holding special significance. He stated that the Surajkund International Crafts Fair has become the identity of Haryana.
The Chief Minister also extended a warm welcome to the artisans and craftsmen from the partner country, the United Republic of Tanzania, and said that the arts and crafts of the East African country Tanzania will definitely be the center of attraction in this fair. In addition, he highlighted Gujarat as the partner state for this year’s fair, further enhancing the diversity and vibrancy of the event.
He said that this year marks a significant milestone as the fair sees participation from over 40 countries for the first time, setting a new record. Chief Minister highlighted the provision of more than 1000 stalls for craftsmen and artisans, providing them with ample opportunity to showcase their talents and creations. He also emphasized the inclusion of Haryana’s culture through features like Chaupal and Apna Ghar, offering visitors a glimpse into the rich heritage of the state. With expectations of 15 to 20 lakh attendees over the course of the 16-day fair, he anticipated a vibrant and bustling event celebrating art, culture, and tradition.
Sh Manohar Lal said that the artwork and handicrafts crafted by artisans embody the true spirit of self-reliant India. Recognizing their significance, Prime Minister Sh Narendra Modi has made special efforts in this direction. The Surajkund International Handicraft Fair has served as an excellent platform for craftsmen and handloom artisans to showcase their skills for the past 36 years. This fair offers a glimpse into the folk arts, traditional dishes, music, dances, and costumes from various regions. It stands as a trinity of tradition, heritage, and culture, attracting tourists not only from India but from around the world, he added.
The state consistently provides platforms to promote craftsmanship. In addition to this fair, Saras mela are organized at the district level, offering craftsmen and weavers opportunities to exhibit their handicrafts, he added.
Addressing the gathering, Haryana Tourism and Heritage Minister Sh Kanwar Pal Surajkund Crafts Mela is being organized for 37 years and its popularity is increasing every year. He credited the fair’s recent surge in popularity to the visionary leadership of Chief Minister Sh Manohar Lal, under whose guidance it has rapidly expanded. He also highlighted the Chief Minister’s dedicated efforts to elevate tourism and events like Surajkund fair to global prominence, resulting in the participation of various countries in the fair. He extended his best wishes for the immense success of the fair.
Union Minister of State for Heavy Industries Sh Krishan Pal, Haryana Transport Minister Sh Moolchand Sharma, Chief Secretary Sh Sanjeev Kaushal, Director General of Police Sh Shatrujit Kapur and other MPs and MLAs were also present on this occasion.