By Ruchir Saraf:
The floods of 2014 ravaged Kashmir, several thousand villages across the state had been hit and 390 villages had been completely submerged. The central part of Srinagar, Lal Chowk, was inundated with water for 15 days. The handlooms were closed for over a month and the tourism industry too was hit. The after effects of the floods are being felt even today. Amongst the worst affected are artisans, whose lifetime worth of work was washed away. Most of the raw materials and finished artwork is stocked in the capital and it got severely damaged.
30% of Kashmir’s economy is dependent on art. Beautiful artworks like Sozni shawls, Arri shawls, Kani shawls, exotic carpets, etc. are made here by artisans who put months of hard work into each piece given the intricacy of the handwork. The art is passed on from one generation to the other and is practiced in the capital of Srinagar as well as the remote villages of the Kashmir valley. However, over the years, handicraft in India is increasingly getting neglected. Moreover, the floods of last year severely impacted their business.
The film salutes the spirit of Kashmiri artisans and craftsmen who are determined to move forward and rebuild their life.