Shillong: With the onset of the Christmas festival in Meghalaya, the first-of-its-kind Winter Tales Festival was inaugurated by Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma on Thursday at the iconic Wards Lake in Shillong city.

Aiming to make it a green Christmas this year, the three-day festival also aims to promote local artists and products. Apart from locals, artists from across the globe have also showcased their work of art at Ward’s Lake.

Taking a tour of the stalls at the festival, CM Sangma also took the opportunity to interact with the artisans and also with the students of Kiddies Corner School who were performing at the event. 

Speaking to the media, Sangma said the idea is to have kind of events where they can celebrate Christmas but while doing that they are looking at 2-3 concepts together.

“Firstly, we aim to promote local artists, local products, which is a continuation of what we’re doing in the Meghalayan Age store. In fact, the entire work that’s been happening for the last year-and-a half. Another is to push towards sustainable kind of a set up.”

The CM said, “Here every product that’s used is really more or less plastic free and natural. The idea is to make it a very green Christmas and a green kind of a festival.”

He added that works of artists from different parts of the world who have made their paintings on Meghalaya are also being displayed at the festival.

The chief minister took the opportunity to wish the citizens a Merry Christmas and also urged everyone to visit the festival.

Asked if this will be a yearly event, Sangma said they aim to hold it every year and will also try to improve it. He added that due to the pandemic, the state hasn’t been able to do much but now the government hopes things go well to make it a calendar event.

Meanwhile, EastMojo interacted with a few local artists and also tourists who attended the festival. P Sangma, an artist of Vero crafts who makes macrame products, said it was a great opportunity for her since she has started her work just two years ago. 

Impressed with the setup and use of sustainable products, a tourist from Kolkata, Ritika Kejriwal, said this was one of the most unique festivals that she has attended. “This is very organised; it’s being held at such a picturesque location which makes you feel like you’re outside of India,” said Kejriwal.

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