Thirty-one artisans have been awarded in Jammu and Kashmir. They are the heartbeat of our country’s ancient history and culture whose creative works have kept the ancient heritage alive, said the Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir, Shri Manoj Sinha. Despite all the changes, the purity of the handcraft is still intact. This is because of you, he said. Carpet weaver Shahnawaz Ahmad Sofi who got the first prize has shown creativity in creating designs depicting India and Kashmir’s legacy and the prevalent culture. The Lieutenant Governor said that the new building of the Parliament will house a carpet from Kashmir. This is a matter of pride for Kashmir. For the last 10 years, the export trend was declining. In the last three months, Rs 729 crore worth of exports was documented. We have helped more than 3,000 Self Help Groups and Co-operative societies. The artists associated with these groups are expanding their business. To raise them further, hand-holding is needed, said the Lieutenant Governor. A big occasion is the G20 programme in Jammu and Kashmir courtesy the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi. From 30 countries, more than 150 representatives are arriving in Jammu and Kashmir. People from within the country are also coming in big numbers. We can tell the world about our art and our specialty. I believe we should seize the opportune moment. The carpets of Jammu and Kashmir have a distinct identity in the market. People are unaware about handmade carpets and machine made carpets. Last year the Indian Institute of Carpet Technology to promote Kashmir corporate has taken many steps for GI Certification, testing, labelling and training. The government is a strong medium and the artisans can associate with the government to contribute in nation building. The Jammu and Kashmir government under the guidance of the PM is committed to uplift the youth and the artisan community to make them strong and empowered.