The Dastkari Haat Samiti is holding the 30th edition of its annual crafts mela from 1 to 15 January at Dilli Haat, opposite the INA market in Delhi. More than 170 craftspeople from villages, towns and cities across the country have participated in the fair. The crafts mela’s special attraction this year is the participation of craftswomen from Myanmar, where they are exhibiting their talent of shell craft, basketry, mat weaving, handloom textile weaving, hyacinth grass weaving and jewellery making. The group of women will also exhibit the world famous Pathein umbrellas, puppets, velvet slippers, lacquer work and jade items inspired by the Myanmarese art and craft traditions. This arrangement is in collaboration with the Dastkari Haat Samiti and is supported by the Ministry of External Affairs, the Embassy of India in Myanmar, the Corriandar Leaf which is an Indian restaurant in Yangon. Myanmar craftspeople will also organise a Crafts and Skill Development Workshop at Dilli Haat. A Myanmar craftswomen participating in the Dastkari Mela said: “It is a very good opportunity for us to come here and show our talent. It is a platform where we can showcase the craft and traditions of Myanmar which is not known to many people. We are also organising workshops where we exchange ideas and talents from the people coming here.” Jaya Jaitley, founder and organiser of the festival, while speaking to The Sunday Guardian said: “Myanmar is a country that has been in isolation for many years, the Myanmarese people have a lot of talent in art and craft and thus, we decided to bring them to India to showcase their talent. They have come here to exchange skills and ideas, because back in their country they do not have the adequate infrastructure to promote their skills. It is the beginning of the capacity building program between both the nations.” The festival will end with a trip to Bodh Gaya in Bihar organised for the Myanmar craftswomen.