He is part of the many Muslim families who have been designing the tableaux in Durga Puja Pandal for generations now.
"My grandfather, father, everyone has been involved in this business. I picked this up from my father ten years ago," says Mr Khan.
In a unique example of communal harmony, the Durga Puja festivity in Cuttack is incomplete without the Muslims. Undeterred by any religious intolerance, the Muslim artisans of the city have been designing the backdrop of the Durga Puja Pandal every year.
"We all live together. There is nothing like Hindu and Muslims. We go and work in their Pandal and they give us a lot of respect. There are no differences between Hindus and Muslims," says Shamim Khan, another artisan involved this business.
Known for their artistic brilliance, each family designs at least six to seven tableaux for Durga Puja every year. The price could range from anything between Rs. 30, 000 to Rs. 1 lakh.
Besides the tableaux, the artisans also design headgear and jewelry for Goddess Durga and other deities.
The tableaux or Medha, as it is called locally is not an artistic creation but also a symbol of communal harmony.
However, the recent shift from zari to using silver tableaux is threatening their art form.
"Silver tableaux have less variety than zari designs. Still, many people are choosing silver tableaux. But we are carrying on with our business. This art form will go on forever," Shamim Khan says.
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