Basket weaving is an ancient art in India. Indigenous communities develop special shapes and patterns of baskets based on their local traditions, needs and techniques. Traditionally, the crafts persons used to make winnows, a type of tray-like bamboo basket used in Bengal, for everyday use and rituals. Different types of baskets, hand held fan, sieves etc. are also made, then painted with auspicious symbols and are used in marriage and other ceremonies. Nowadays, crafts persons are producing various diversified products like lamp-shades, coasters etc. The crafts persons from Uttar Dinajpur, Malda can make diversified products such as utility items, decorative items, jewelleries, along with the traditional items.
The tradition of basket weaving is prevalent in Malda, Uttar Dinajpur, Purulia, Birbhum, Dakshin Dinajpur, Purba Bardhaman, Paschim Bardhaman, Darjeeling and Kalimpong districts of West Bengal. Basketry as an art form has been included since RCCH I (2016 onwards). A total of 113 artists from Uttar Dinajpur, 964 from Malda, 1057 from Purulia, 239 from Birbhum, 176 from Purba Bardhaman, 72 from Dakshin Dinajpur, 66 from Paschim Bardhaman, 1 from Darjeeling and 14 from Kalimpong have been included under the aegis of RCCH project.