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Shahida Khanam, Tribal Girl set up first tribal museum in Bandipora

Tribal girl Shahida Khanam establishes first tribal museum in Bandipora

   

Aadil Abdullah

Bandipora:- Shahida Khanam, a 27-year-old tribal woman hailing from Aragam village in Bandipora district, has emerged as a beacon of hope for the preservation of the rich cultural heritage of the Gujjar community in Jammu and Kashmir

Shahida Khanam said that apart from preserving traditional things in her museum she offers a formal training of Sozni, Embroidery, Knitting, tailoring, designing, and crafting traditional jewelry to local tribal girls.

Over the past ten months, her center has empowered more than 40 girls, not only preserving their cultural roots but also enabling them to earn a livelihood.
Khan’s dreams of expanding her training program to reach more tribal girls, fostering self-employment opportunities.

The center not only teaches traditional crafts but also incorporates modern elements like fashion designing, allowing these girls to adapt to contemporary trends while cherishing their heritage.

Shahida’s museum collection includes traditional ornaments, coins, dresses, earthen utensils, and other items, providing a glimpse into the ancestral way of life.

“We learn different skills her which will not generate an employment opportunities for a poor girls like us but is also the way to preserve our tradition. We love to learn here,” Shegufta a local girl said.

Shahida’s museum not only houses traditional artifacts but also serves as a hub for imparting knowledge and skills to local tribal girls.

The museum’s collection boasts a treasure trove of traditional ornaments, coins, dresses, earthen utensils, and various other items that offer a captivating glimpse into the ancestral way of life of the Gujjar and Bekarwal people.Beyond merely preserving these artifacts, Shahida’s vision extends to nurturing the next generation by offering formal training in a spectrum of crafts such as Sozni, Embroidery, Knitting, tailoring, designing, and crafting traditional jewelry.

The center’s curriculum doesn’t solely focus on traditional crafts but also incorporates modern elements like fashion designing, enabling these young girls to seamlessly blend contemporary trends with their cherished heritage.

One of the local girls, Shegufta, expressed her gratitude, stating, “We learn different skills here, which not only generate employment opportunities for poor girls like us but also serve as a means to preserve our traditions. We love to learn here.”

Shahida Khan’s determination and dedication to preserving the cultural essence of her community through education and skill development stand as an inspiring example.

Her museum not only serves as a repository of artifacts but also as a vibrant space where tradition and modernity converge, ensuring the cultural legacy of the Gujjar and Bekarwal communities thrives for generations to come.

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