Clay Pot Over Fire Here’s What Industry Insiders Say About Clay Pot Over Fire
A tiny apple alleged Tuna lies by the sea in Gujarat’s Kutch district. Pottery is the capital antecedent of alimentation here. And the lives of the potters are intertwined with the adroit aeon of the sea. No added pot, it is said, keeps baptize so awfully cool, alike in the baking calefaction of summers, or lends it so beginning and candied a taste.
The secret, the potters say, lies in the adobe they use, which they dig up from the seabed during a specific time of the month.
“Our baptize pots advertise all over Gujarat; I aloof beatific a truckload to Mehsana 300 km away,” says Razak bhai, a potter in Tuna, as he works the adaptable adobe until the pot holds the adapted shape. It is the salinity of the sea that gives the adobe its different property, he says.
Collecting the adobe is, therefore, timed with the course — cyclically, every month. “We aggregate the adobe alone during the no-moon phase, back the sea recedes the extreme and we can ability the seabed. Back the baptize recedes, the adobe becomes dry. The acrid sea baptize makes this atramentous mitti (earth) special,” he says.
Hanif bhai, additionally a potter in the village, says they cannot
collect adobe during the monsoon, back the sea brims over. “Other than the four cloudburst months, our assembly goes on through the year.” The pots are fabricated actual attenuate in a continued and backbreaking process. “Our backs accord up,” says Hanif bhai. “But this is the alone barter we apperceive and the alone barter we are meant to do.”
Women are aloof as abundant a allotment of the action of authoritative Tuna pots. “We too are acutely complex in the pot-making. We aggregate the adobe in the tractors, adapt it for the potter’s wheel, advice adapt the kiln, and again acrylic the pots,” says Fatima ben.
Tuna’s kilns are advanced and can blaze up to 400 pots at once. “The action of battlefront is actual specific,” says Hanif bhai. The anhydrate has to aboriginal be bankrupt thoroughly. Then, burst pieces of pots are placed over a absolute of timberline bark. This is again layered with added burst pieces, over which the green pots are placed, upside down. The pots are again covered with chhandh, a admixture of copse and fertiliser, and the anhydrate accursed for two canicule and nights.
Once baked, the pots are painted. Tuna’s pots about accept curve fatigued about them. “To analysis if they are from here, rub the apparent gently; it will flake,” says Fatima ben. “Fill it with water, and it will not do so any more.”
The adobe does not accommodate itself to added domiciliary objects. “For example, if we accomplish a kadhai (wok) of it, it does not calefaction up as finer on the blaze as the adobe pots. Our clay’s aspect is the baptize pot. Generations of my ancestors accept crafted them. That is the tradition,” says Razak bhai.
A pot is awash for about ₹30-35 by the potters. In the market, the amount rises to about ₹80-100 per piece. The appeal is consistently high, and it is for this acumen that the cardinal of potters brief to Tuna from adjacent villages has been gradually accretion over the years. “In the accomplished four or bristles years, at atomic 10 Kumbhar (potter) families accept migrated to our apple from elsewhere,” says Razak bhai. “Now we accept 60-70 families here.”
There is, however, a abiding agitation in the village. A few years ago, back the Tuna terminal of Adani Ports was commissioned, it airish a blackmail to the potters. The breadth cordoned off by the anchorage authorities was breadth the potters got their adobe from. “That mitti is the best,” says Razak bhai. Back the potters bidding their concern, they were offered some respite.
“They [the company] told us that the breadth is not actuality acclimated by them for now, and so we can abide to aggregate adobe from there.” The anguish is how continued the acquittal will last.
Meanwhile, addition breadth breadth the potters aggregate their adobe from has started accident out to a cardinal of alkali factories advancing up in the vicinity. The balance alkali that seeps into the arena makes the adobe lose its appropriate quality. The potters accept accounting to the commune beneficiary cogent their concern.
The families abide hopeful. “Our assignment will go on, aloof like it has for the aftermost 300 years,” says Razak bhai. Aloof like the tides and the sea.
The biographer is a Gujarat-based freelance journalist.
Clay Pot Over Fire Here’s What Industry Insiders Say About Clay Pot Over Fire – clay pot over fire
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