Odisha’s Bali Jatra Gets A Kashmiri Flavour With Pashmina Shawls

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Cuttack: Pashmina shawls and sarees, foam tulips and dahlia, dry fruits and designs with chinar leaves – Kashmir is making its presence felt at Bali Jatra. It has made the range of choices for the buyers more interesting. The crowd at the Ormas stall jostling for a look at the offerings from the state leaves no doubt about it.

Business has been brisk for pashmina shawls, which are generally not available to customers in Odisha. The good quality ones don’t come cheap, although the price band in the shawl category is wide, between Rs 200 and Rs 20,000. However, it has failed to dampen the enthusiasm of buyers. The makers have introduced new designs to make their product more attractive.

The same goes for sarees from Jammu and Kashmir. Available in the price range of Rs 300-10,000, they are a big draw among women in the jatra. Familiar with sarees from other states and in search of something different, they find those from J&K tasteful in design and texture. Sarees in silk and chiffon with the famous Aari work are in demand and so are those with Kashmiri embroidery. Here too, new designs have been introduced.

“Elephants and peacocks are not part of the usual Kashmiri design. But they have been introduced of late,” says Nita Das, a customer. “Also, the tamarind tree does not appear often in sarees from Kashmir,” she adds. Das had settled for a shawl with the design of chinar leaves.

The traders are not complaining. They are happy with the curiosity that Kashmiri goods are generating and footfall at the stall. “We have been coming here for more than 12 years now and business is getting better,” says Sanjiv, who is managing the stall. He adds that shawls, both woollen and pashmina, are liked by people. “Our sarees and suit pieces are also much in demand,” he adds.

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