Bhubaneswar: The Odisha government on Thursday decided to renovate the existing urban ”haats” to boost handloom and handicraft sectors in the post-lockdown period, a senior official said.
The decision was taken at a high-level meeting held under chairmanship of Chief Secretary AK Tripathy where it was decided to initiate the process for renovating the urban ”haats”, presently operating at Bhubaneswar, Konark and Puri.
Suggesting that renovation should be made through convergence of tourism, cultural and handicraft activities at the spots, Tripathy said, the urban ”haats” should be developed to make them places of tourist attraction.
It was decided in the meeting that Textile, Handloom and Handicraft departments would maintain and upscale these ”haats” to attractive commercial spots for their products.
Development Commissioner S C Mohapatra suggested that the space should be reserved for traditional craftsmen for exhibiting and selling their products throughout the year directly to domestic and international customers.
This would give a wider exposure to the artisans and fetch more income against their own products, he said. They would also get a direct sense of the customers choice and demand, Mohapatra said.
Chief Managing Director Industrial Infrastructure Development Corporation (IDCO) S K Singh said, the urban ”haat” at Bhubaneswar has been built over an area of 5 acres with around 50 stalls, one amphitheatre, two green rooms, 10 food stalls and one toilet.
The ”haat” at Puri has been built over an area of 6.83 acres with 36 stalls, one amphitheatre, two green rooms, two dormitories and one toilet, he said.
The ”haat” at Konark developed over 4.15 acres has 40 stalls, four exhibition halls, one amphitheatre, two green rooms, one utility building, one toilet and one dormitory, Singh said.
All these ”haats” are presently operating and are maintained by the IDCO.