Have you ever thought why none of the heritage building and structures were ever moved or got badly damaged by violent disasters. It is because of the traditional building practices and material used while construction of these buildings. I recently visited Fatehpur, which is an excellent open art gallery of Shekhawati region but no one to conserve and protect it. The traditional building practices are climatic friendly or sustainable.
In fact the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) under the Ministry of Culture and the respective state departments of archaeology, through its national conservation policy, recommends, skilled workers with the knowledge of traditional building practices must only work at heritage sites but unfortunately, only a handful of such people are to be found.
These traditional building practices were evolved with local materials specific to states and region suitable to climatic conditions. For instance easily available materials like fenugreek seeds, jaggery, yogurt etc were used for heritage building practices in Rajasthan, which is very similar to materials used in other states with few modifications in the ingredients. The traditional and locally available materials fulfil the needs of people, which cause minimal environmental damage and are sustainable. But, in spite of numerous benefits of these practices, these are not followed due to increased demand for new construction materials, techniques and rapid growth.
The traditional building practices are eventually being forgotten and have been rendered insignificant in the modern context. Due to lack of connect between the market and traditional building practices, the scope of employment opportunities remain limited. Also, lack of efforts to formalise the experiential (acquired inter-generationally) with no new skilling efforts brings a huge skill gap in the heritage industry.
To meet the demand for specific skills of a high order, we a group of people are promoting skill development programme to impart heritage skills for construction workers, masons and school dropouts - in close consultation with industry players, corporations, state governments, experts, State Archaeology, ASI, Heritage Hotels, Hospitality chains and academia.
For imparting training in traditional building practices, which are more sustainable and climate-friendly, we had organised Sensitisation workshop in which more than 350 people participated. The want to get trained in heritage skills. We have touch based with the industry players too who are looking for skilled manpower ensuring placement of these people.
Help us to make this strategic shift for people in heritage sector from unorganised to organised sector.