Well-coordinated teamwork speaks About Us

Who We Are

Insha-e-Noor is a craft-based women’s enterprise based out of Nizamuddin, New Delhi, initiated under Aga Khan Trust for Culture’s Nizamuddin Urban Renewal Initiative. It is owned by women artisans of Nizamuddin Basti and represents their constant drive to create, evolve and take control of their lives.
Insha-e-Noor, which translates into ‘creation of light’, celebrates people, ideas, crafts, culture and heritage.

What We Do

We at Insha-e-Noor produce a range of exquisite textile and paper products that draw inspiration from Nizamuddin's 700-year-old rich cultural and architectural heritage. All our products are handcrafted by women artisans of Nizamuddin using the crafts of Sanjhi, Aari embroidery and Crochet.

The product you have chosen to buy is a unique blend of crafts, a creative interpretation of culture, and the hard work of artisans.

According to the AKDN Quality-of-Life Baseline survey conducted in the year 2007.

Our Journey

The Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC) initiated the Nizamuddin Urban Renewal Initiative, a people-public-private partnership, in 2007. The project aimed to improve the quality of life of the local community using heritage conservation as a stepping stone. It included improving and strengthening the government aanganwadis, school, and clinic and improving the streets, parks, the side of the Barapulla Nallah, and the heritage structures. All these interventions were designed and implemented in discussion with the community.

Insha-e-Noor was in response to the fact that only 9%[1] of the women of Nizamuddin Basti had their own source of income, and even those were mostly part of the unorganised sector. Limited education and mobility further constrained their ability to earn. 

We needed to connect with the community with something that was culturally acceptable and, yet, had the scope to grow into something that would empower women, so a training centre for embroidery and tailoring was initiated in 2008. This vocational education centre equipped women with skills that could help them earn from home and came with a certificate from a government body that helped win the community's trust.

After a few years, when a critical mass had built up, the women desired to earn from what they had learnt at the centre. The journey of Insha-e-Noor, the enterprise, began in the second half of 2011 –  with a product development workshop that created products based on their skills. 

The first taste of the market was the Dastkar Nature Bazaar, where Insha-e-Noor went with an inventory of Rs 40,000 and managed to sell more than half of it. It was a happy day filled with hope and excitement. After that, there was no looking back. There have been many firsts along this journey – the first big order from large retail chains, the first order from a design house, the first time the members operated the large paper cutting machine, the first time the notebooks were bound in-house, the first time members fabricated the lamps, the first election for the board of directors and more.

Since that first exhibition, the journey has mostly uphill with a few dips – especially during Covid times.

Insha-e-Noor, now a full-fledged micro-enterprise, was registered as a producer company in 2019 with women artisans as shareholders and directors.

Our Objective

Insha-e-Noor, primarily a livelihood program, aims to create dignified, sustained, and enhanced incomes for the women in Nizamuddin Basti.
This aligns with the objectives of the Nizamuddin Urban Renewal Initiative, which is to improve the quality of lives of the local community - using heritage conservation as a stepping stone.

Our Values and Guiding Principles


For ourselves, our crafts, our artisans and our customers.

This translates into genuine and wholesome customer service with products made to the best of our capacity and priced fairly.

Inclusion and Equity

All women members from the community, irrespective of their religion, age, education, caste and class, are welcome to be a part of Insha-e-Noor and acquire the skills to become producer members.
This translates into a fair, transparent and safe working space where the women can learn, earn and sometimes just be, a luxury few in Nizamuddin Basti could afford.

Growth mindset

We accept our mistakes, learn from them and strive to do our best.

This translates into authentic efforts and a constant drive to improve ourselves to offer our customers and artisan members the best possible products and services.


Our Impact

We work through every aspect at the planning

Number of women trained in crafts since inception
Number of regular producer members
Number of women artisans as shareholders
Number of women artisans as directors

Our Promise

  • Exquisite beautiful products
  • Inspired by the lattices and medallions of Mughal monuments in and around Nizamuddin
  • 100% handcrafted by the women artisans of Nizamuddin
  • All proceeds from the sales go to the women and their enterprise

Our Gallery