An 83-year-old tribal woman, Jodhaiya Bai from Umaria district in Madhya Pradesh, has been conferred with India’s fourth highest civilian award Padma Shri in the field of art.
Jodhaiya Bai, also known as Amma, is a resident of Lorha village in Umaria district, and she is a Baiga Art mural painter. Amma, who lost her parents in her childhood, has proved that there is no age bar for learning as she learnt painting at the age of nearly 70 years and her paintings are exhibited not only in the state or in the country but also abroad.
Amma learnt painting from Ashish Swami, a well-known art teacher, who ran a studio ‘Jan-gan Tasweerkhana’ in the district. Unfortunately, Swami had died during the second wave of COVID-19 pandemic.
Talking about her life, she told ANI, “My mother passed away when I was six months old and my father passed away when I was one-year-old. I had three brothers who brought me up and arranged my wedding. After that I lost my husband when I reached 40 years of age. At that time, I had two sons and I was pregnant with a six-month old daughter.”
“After that I had faced various problems. I somehow manage to earn my livelihood by working as a labourer and other works. Later on, my sons became older and they started becoming independent. When Guru ji (Ashish Swami) came here from Mumbai, he told my son to bring your mother here so she would work here and asked my son to do it as well,” she added.
“We both started working there. When guruji called me then I said that I could not work here as I don’t know how to read and write. Then he asked me to draw on the floor with a thin wooden stick and I started drawing vegetables with the stick on the floor. After that he started giving papers and asked me to draw on paper. Later on gradually she shifted the painting to the canvas,” Amma said.
Reacting on being honoured with Padam Shri, she said, “I am happy to receive the award. I would like to thank guruji for the achievement. He has shown this dream to me and it has been accomplished.” (ANI)
This report is filed by ANI news service. TheNewsMill holds no responsibility for this content.