The Financial Express

Sonargaon gets recognition as ‘World Craft City’

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Sardar Bari at Sonargaon 	— UNB Photo Sardar Bari at Sonargaon — UNB Photo

NARAYANGANJ, Oct 13 (UNB): Sonargaon, one of the old capitals of the historic region of Bengal, has been recognised as the 'World Craft City' for being the birthplace of Jamdani, opening the door of creative tourism.

In a landmark decision, the World Craft Council (WCC) gave the recognition through a letter on Friday, said Upazila Nirbahi Officer of Sonargaon Anjan Kumar Sarkar.

"The recognition will widen the door of creativity, talents and experiences," he said.

The recognition came after the Bangladesh Folk Art and Crafts Foundation and Bengal Foundation, which organises Jamdani Festival, jointly appealed to the WCC seeking recognition of the city, located near the old course of the Brahmaputra river, as a world craft city for Jamdani and Weaving.

Following the application, a delegation of WCC judges visited Sonargaon in the first week of September to decide the matter.

Locals said Liyakot Hossain Khoka, the current MP from Narayanganj-3 constituency, and the local administration played a significant role in bringing the honour for Sonargaon where the country's Folk Art and Craft Museum and the Panam Nagar are situated.

 With this, any place of Bangladesh has been recognised as the World Craft City for the first time and this will create scope for exchange of experiences and strategies at national, regional and international levels, the UNO said.

This recognition will also create a scope for exchanging cooperation and partnership with other world craft cities like Mamallapuram of India (Stone Carving), Fuxin of China (Agate), Sakon Nakhon of Thailand (Natural Indigo Dyeing), Bornholm of Denmark (Ceramic) and Kalpourgan of Iran (Handmade Pottery), he said.

Earlier in 2016, the Department of Patents, Designs and Trademarks (DPDT) recognised Jamdani, a traditional fabric of the country, as a Geographical Indication (GI) product of Bangladesh.

GI is a name or sign used on products to certify that it possesses certain qualities for being made or produced as per traditional methods or enjoys a certain reputation due to its geographical origin.

Jamdani is a fine muslin textile of Bengal, produced for centuries and whether figured or flowered, it is a woven fabric in cotton which is also a symbol of aristocracy.

The demand for quality Jamdani saris has increased exponentially over the years.

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