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SYNOPSIS:

CRAFT MUSEUM AND RURAL EMPOWERMENT CENTRE,


PUSHKAR, RAJASTHAN

INTRODUCTION:
Pushkar lies in the heart of Rajasthan, is one of the major pilgrimage centres in
India with over 500 odd temples in and around the city. The most sacred being
the Brahma Temple, the only temple in the world, dedicated to lord Brahma.
The town hosts an annual cattle fair in the month of November where people
from as far as Punjab come to trade cattle. This makes it an important tourist
magnet and gives us the opportunity to showcase the strengths of Rajasthan. It
creates an opportunity to propagate Indian culture, festival, sports and craft at
an international level.

AIM:To understand and develop with the intent to give something back to society
which would help in the development of the town and would help resolve various
social issues identified.

OBJECTIVE:

Creating a year round facility to display the traditional crafts of Pushkar so


that people get to see the flavour of the town irrespective of the mela.
This can be not only a centre to display the handicrafts of the rural people,
but also gives them an opportunity to produce, display and sell their goods
on their own town.

This centre empowers the Rajasthani women of the town to produce goods
with the help of their ancestral hand skills and learn new technologies to
produce craft. They get an opportunity to display their skills and become
entrepreneurs.

WHY PUSHKAR?
Pushkar is a pilgrimage centre of national importance, with the only known
temple of Lord Brahma in the country. There is a steady flow of pilgrims
throughout the year to Pushkar, which is among the five principal places of Hindu
pilgrimage. It is, however transformed into a bustling fair-ground in the month of
Kartik (October-November) when the annual Pushkar Fair is held, when lakhs of
pilgrims throng to Pushkar for a dip in the holy lake, which is considered very
auspicious. It is also the venue of an internationally known cattle fair, held in
conjuncture with the religious fair, which is being patronized by the Government
of Rajasthan on the occasion of Kartik Purnima during the month of November.
The unique setting of sand dunes in the back drop of hills is a major attraction
with the foreign tourists whose numbers have been steadily increasing in the last
few years. The social and cultural events like the cattle fair intrigue overseas
visitors who come in large numbers to participate in the fair. The religious
sanctity of the town is a major factor which draws pilgrims from across the
country almost all year round, especially during Kartik Purnima, an auspicious
occasion.

HERITAGE POTENTIAL:
The inventory of heritage monuments in Pushkar includes religious buildings like
Brhama Temple , Rangji Temple etc. and natural features like Sand dunes. Based
on field visits and discussion with officials, it is understood that most of the
religious monuments are maintained in fair condition by trusts, apart from the
ghats most of which are in poor condition and need immediate attention. Of
these, few monuments have high architectural and tourism significance,
although they are not adequately provided with infrastructure and facilities like
proper approach road with pavements, public convenience facility, parking areas
etc.

SOCIAL ISSUE:
Pushkar being an important tourist magnet has a huge number of international
tourists visiting the city all year round. Most of the tourists stay in the town for
months travelling to other parts of Rajasthan . The new generations of the town
do not aspire to become anything more than tourist guides and do not complete
their education and become guides.

Tourism plays a huge role in the economy of this town and in last two decades,
this has lead to a huge change in the society.

URBAN ISSUES:Congestion of areas, in and around the lake, have caused complex problems of
restricting natural drainage into the lake. Further the inter-mixing of sewage with
storm water deteriorates the quality of water draining into the lake during the
monsoons.
There is a decline in public spaces alongside ghats, including access to the lake.
These public spaces are being converted into private spaces with the pressures
of commercialization. Many dharamshalas are being indiscriminately converted
into hotels. Besides, there is not proper Parikrama Path around the lake. There is
large scale neglect of built heritage because of either over use or under use. The
new construction is in sharp contrast to the traditional character, thus destroying
the townscape. This reflects absolute lack of urban design element. The new
developments in the town clearly shows lack of effective development controls.
Temple trusts undertake repair and rehabilitation of the religious monuments
such as temples and ghats without much emphasis on the conservation aspect.
As a result the monuments are altered indiscriminately disregarding their
historical value.

ECONOMIC GROWTH:
Some households make rose by-products and Gota . 30 units are engaged in
preparation of rose water, garlands etc. and 40 units produces Gota (reference
from the survey documents of Pushkar2011: bib 2).
Other than rose by-products, households are engaged in making sweets, baskets,
garlands and other temple related materials. Most of these units are within
residential premises. Production of ethnic garments and accessories like
footwear, bags etc. is an important trade that is growing. The town is a centre for

all other nearby villages which excel in local craft, floriculture, agriculture and
garment making.
It serves as a great tourist spot for domestic and international tourists thus
Tourism plays major role in economy of the city.

CONCLUSION:
To conclude the above mentioned theory, my main aim is to develop Pushkar into
a stage to portray the tradition and culture of Pushkar as a city, conserving its
historical as well as heritage value and by benefitting the local people most out
of it, thus increase in economic as well as cultural growth.
This can be achieved by providing proper infrastructure for the Pushkar Fair held
yearly, which in turn will help the local people by providing a platform to
showcase their art and craft skills. A part of solid infrastructure will be
developed and proposed, as a connecting causeway between the city and the
mela ground that area will be available to the tourists and the locals throughout
the year, thus helping in steady economic growth.
This will provide employment to the women of Pushkar in their field of expertise
and educate them and their children about the new technology used to create
their crafts.
As the Pushkar Fair attracts domestic and international tourists as well, the
development has a great scope for recreational areas and many other activities
helping the Pushkar Fair get famed worldwide.
Through my research, the above theory can be accomplished by taking
inspiration from:
1. The Festival of Rann of Kutchh, Gujrat - Kutch is considered to be a
haven for numerous handicrafts, which are carried on from generation to
generation. This annually organized festival offers an opportunity for
visitors to attend folk dance and music concepts, to watch artisans at
work, to shop directly from NGOs craftspeople and village co-operatives,

to see the great Historical monuments in the state, and to visit places off
the usual tourist trail.
2. Bhujodi ( An extended part of Kutchh) A small town just 8 km
southeast of Bhuj, Bhujodi is a major textile centre of Kutch, textile
handicraft production. Here you can meet weavers, tie-dye artists and
block printers. A set up is provided by a corporate non-profit wing to help
artisans display and sell their work and organizes dance and music events
on weekends. This helps the tourists who could not come for the yearly
festival , experience the same .

BIBLIOGRAPHY:
1. Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pushkar
2. PDF -Town Level Background Paper of Pushkar2011 by Institute of
Development , Jaipur
3. PDF-Diverse beliefs : Tourism of Faith Religious tourism gains
grounds , Author : Strategic Initiatives& government Advisory [ SIGA]
Team.
4. PDF-City Development Plan for Ajmer & Pushkar by Ajmer and
Pushkar Municipal Board
5. Gujrat Tourism -http://www.gujarattourism.com