Janata Maidan in Bhubaneswar gets abuzz with traders from across India who bring along some of the most exquisite handicrafts and home decor items at the Toshali National Crafts Mela that is held in December every year. The crafts fair is hosted amid attractive folk performing arts and Odissi music performances every day. An array of crafts from various Indian states and many exclusive craft forms of Odisha are available at the annual fair organized by Ministry of Tourism, Odisha Tourism, Department of Textiles, Handloom and Handicrafts, Government of Odisha and Development Commissioner for Handicrafts and Handlooms.
The event was first held in 2004-05 and has been popular ever since. The objective behind the fair is to promote weavers, artisans and craftsmen and give them exposure of the best practices in other States. The craftsmen also get to interact with the buyers directly and understand the needs of the shoppers.
At this annual fair, over 300 stalls are set up by the artisans of the 20 odd participating states. Often SAARC nations – Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bhutan- are also seen participating in the fair. Handloom, home décor items, jewellery and adornments for women as well as other fashion accessories like footwear, tribal ornaments of Odisha, Chhattisgarh and Jharkhand and many more crafts are on display at the fair. One must visit the exclusive filigree silver works offered at a series of stalls at the fair.
Apart from the crafts available on all 13 days of the fair, another highlight is the folk and tribal dances and music from all parts of Odisha. A food court is also part of the event where one can munch a snack or opt for a sumptuous meal.
|Mela Dates||Usually held in the 2nd week of December every year|
|Cultural Programme timings||6 PM - 8 PM|
|Venue||Janta Maidan, Bhubaneswar|