The Narendra Modi-led government is all set to give India's indigenous toy industry an exclusive fair.
The initiative is designed to encourage and promote home-grown toy industry with an aim to help India explore the rich heritage of locally-made toys.
'The India Toy Fair' will be held between 27 February and 2 March. It will be held on a virtual platform.
In 2020, amid the military stand off with China, the promotion of the indigenous toys industry became one of the key elements in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision for "Atmanirbhar Bharat" and the "Vocal for Local" campaign.
"This initiative is in line with the Prime Minister’s vision of making India a global hub for the toy industry," a release from the Ministry of Education has said.
India's stand off with China led to a wide discussion on Indian social media on the need to know, promote and explore India-made toys. The subject calls for awareness on the threats involved in the use of China-made toys.
The event also aims to leverage the potential of toys in making learning joyful across all ages. "The fair is expected to feature millions of users from different parts of India and will give them an opportunity to buy products from a variety of different exhibitors."
The government release says: "The India Toy Fair 2021 intends to bring policy-makers, toy manufacturers and distributors, investors, industry experts, MSMEs, artisans, startups, children, parents and teachers together on a common platform, in a bid to propel the growth of the Indian toy industry, giving it a global competitive edge."
The fair will feature virtual exhibition with over 1,000 virtual stalls. There seems to be a focus on verbal interactions around the related themes and subjects, and those, in turn going local with webinars by state governments.
There will be "knowledge sessions" held with engaging panel discussions/webinars on a wide range of topics by experts in field.
The seminars will cover areas that directly and indirectly are bound to engage children when ideas start to practically roll out to toy making, designing, thinking and use. Some ideas, it is expected, would trickle into education imparted through the use of toys: a great plus.
The experts will address the following areas: "toy-based learning, craft demonstrations, competitions, quizzes, virtual tours, product launches, etc."
The seminars in the fair will focus on the education sector. The knowledge sessions will address areas "emphasised in the NEP 2020". These include learning: play-based, activity-based, "indoor and outdoor play, use of puzzles and games to promote critical thinking and overall on how to make learning more engaging and enjoyable."
The release mentions that the exhibitors include "Indian businesses, NCERT, SCERTs, CBSE along with their schools and teachers, IIT Gandhinagar, NID and Children’s University, Ahmadabad."
This indicates a direct participation of creative partners and experts, who will definitely lead to the evolving of the indigenous toy heritage with contemporary thought to positively impact education.
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