Kashmir, the paradise of India, has very harsh winter months. The temperature many times drops to -8 to – 9-degree Celsius. The people of the state have a cost-effective method of keeping warm. They don’t prefer electric heaters. Instead, they use Kangri.
Even in the era of electric heaters, they have the old habit of carrying a mobile ‘Kangri’, which is a portable heater that can be carried anywhere. The ‘Kangri’ is filled with embers which glow and are wrapped in a wicker basket which is handmade.
Kangris are very eco-friendly and cost-effective. The raw materials are found in nature but the manufacturing of this product requires local craftsmanship. People prefer Kangri because there are frequent power outages in the state’s villages. So the electric heater is a completo no. The traditional fire pot, which has a heating arrangement, can be ignited with 250gms of ‘charcoal’ which indeed is cheaper than oil, gas and the wood using fire heaters.
The manufacturing process goes on like this – the twigs are collected from the shrubs, then scraped and peeled. The other steps involve soaking, drying, dying and then, in the end, the bowl-shaped earthenware is woven.
The cost of ‘Kangri’ can range from Rs 130 to Rs 1500. This product helps the people of Kashmir earn. The price of the product is kept very nominal for sales.
The people of Kashmir have always chosen the traditional method of heating if asked to choose between the modern day heating appliance, irrespective of it available in the market.
Many tourists who go there are fond of such art and crafts of the state. ‘Kangri’ is Kashmir’s beautiful little portable comfort.
Preview Photo: thehindu.com