Express News Service
BENGALURU: The Covid-19 pandemic has made shoppers jittery this festive season. It has also taught them how less and early make the festival safe and happy. Apart from buying online, people have now started shopping early for Dasara and Diwali, instead of rushing to the outlets at the last minute. Also, instead of waiting for weekend and discount offers, they are preferring to be the early birds.
“Covid cases are rising and we cannot take chances. We have decided to buy just one dress and use it for two occasions as no gatherings are being organised. Normally, we would shop during Navarathri when fresh collections are displayed. But this year, we have already shopped as going to crowded places may affect our health,” said Tejaswini L, a software professional.
Potters making Diwali lamps see an early demand
Vibha K, a homemaker, said, “The Lockdown and Unlock have taught us that we can be happy with little. We have prepared a list of what we usually purchased every year and from that, we have cut down to what we want this year. Only food and religious items have remained, which we will purchase online.” Potters making earthen lamps for Diwali are also seeing an early demand. “Normally, the rush starts during the end of Dasara, but we have already started selling diyas. Purchases are less, but they are happening. This will help in lighting up our festival also,” said Kamal, a potter from the Majestic area.
Ajay Motwani, vice-president, Commercial Street Shopkeepers’ Association, said sales are gradually picking up since September. “By October- end, we hope that at least 60 per cent of sales will take place. Unlike earlier, when customers rushed during weekends, it is now all through the week and this is a positive sign that the market is reviving.”
However, the wholesale markets are yet to see an uptick. Retailers accepted that they are first clearing the stocks to make heldover payments to wholesalers before taking fresh stocks. Sajjan Raj Mehta of the Wholesale Garments Merchants’ Association said that the business is gradually picking up, but markets are still not fully operational as finances and health continues to be a concern.