India: Demand for Moradabad vessels spikes after PM Modi gifts it to German chancellor

The artisan has been hand-engraving brass vessels for decades but the popularity of his wares increased only after the prime minister chose to present it to Olaf Scholz last year

By PTI

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Artisan Dilshad Hussain recently got an order from Mumbai and delivered the vessels at a rate of Rs18,000 a piece. — Image tweeted by ANI
Artisan Dilshad Hussain recently got an order from Mumbai and delivered the vessels at a rate of Rs18,000 a piece. — Image tweeted by ANI

Published: Sun 19 Feb 2023, 4:30 PM

Last updated: Sun 19 Feb 2023, 5:16 PM

Dilshad Hussain has been hand-engraving brass vessels for decades but never have the demand and popularity for his wares been as high as after Prime Minister Narendra Modi gifted a nickel-coated matka to German Chancellor Olaf Scholz last year.

“The popularity of matka has increased many times since the prime minister chose to present it to the German chancellor. Now I keep getting orders,” Hussain, 75, said.

During a G7 Summit last year, Prime Minister Modi gifted to the German chancellor a nickel-coated hand-engraved brass vessel from Moradabad, also known as ‘Peetal Nagari’ or brass city of Uttar Pradesh.

Hussain was recently conferred the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian honour of the country, for his work. The septuagenarian artisan said he learnt the craft under the guidance of his grandfather.

He also received the ‘Shilpa Guru’ award six years ago from then president Ram Nath Kovind.

Hussain said he recently got an order from Mumbai and delivered the vessels at a rate of Rs18,000 a piece.

Orders are coming in from other cities too, he said.

Sharing the technique behind his craft, Hussain said the design is first sketched on a paper. Then an outline of the whole design is done with a fine engraving tool hammered with a wooden block. This particular type of engraving is called ‘Marodi’, he said.

Hussain praised Kshipra Shukla, the chairperson of the Uttar Pradesh Institute of Design and Research (UPIDR), for extending help in popularising his craft.

“I never faced any discrimination due to my religion. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has praised my work many times,” he said.

Hussain said he has been training youngsters, many of them women.

The UPIDR chairperson said they have been providing help to artisans and craftsmen at the grassroots across the state without any consideration of caste, religion or gender.

The Lucknow-based institute under the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) department has been organising training programmes for artisans in different cities.

The aim is to help artisans and craftsmen to improve their products so that they fetch good money from buyers, Shukla said.


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