Tribune News Service
Bathinda, October 14
The fortnight-long SARAS (Sale of Articles of Rural Artisans’ Society) Mela, showcasing rural products from various states, was inaugurated today with much fanfare by Rural Development and Panchayat Minister Sikander Singh Maluka at Dadi Poti Park in Model Town phase-3.
The event began with the lighting of the ceremonial lamp by the minster.
Maluka said the handicrafts displayed at the mela were a part of the rich legacy of the vibrant culture of the country.
The mela showcases products made by people from rural areas. They comprise artisans, craftsmen, chefs, farmers, weavers, carpenters, food processors and traditional medicine practitioners from 25 states, he added.
The minister said it was a proud moment for the city that the Union Ministry for Rural Development and Panchayats was organising the fair again in the city after a gap of only two years.
Maluka appealed to the people to ensure healthy participation in the fair and see the vast traditional and cultural items of various states.
Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development) Shena Aggarwal said the purpose of the event was to provide a platform to rural craftsmanship under the aegis of the Union Rural Development Ministry, in collaboration with Punjab Government.
She said the event was not only providing best and direct opportunities to sell goods prepared by craftsmen it also increased employment avenues.
The district administration has engaged artists, singers and ghazal masters.
Renowned singers Sharry Mann, Kanwar Grewal, Satwinder Bugga, Gurmit Bawa, Amarinder Bobby, Amar Sujanpuri, Upkar Sandhu and Nimrat Khaira will perform in the mela.
A special cultural troupe of the Punjab Police from Patiala will entertain people every day by presenting folk songs, she added.
As many as 250 stalls of self-help groups from across the country have been set up in the fair.
Cultural activities, magic shows, entertainment and recreational activities for children are also organised in the fair.
Mayor Balwant Rai Nath, MLA Darshan Singh Kotfatta, Zila Parishad chairman Gurpreet Singh Maluka, Deputy Commissioner Dr Basant Garg and others were also present at the inauguration ceremony.
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