Firecracker dealers see drop in sales

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Reducing footfall at firecracker stall
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Fewer customers leave vendors worried
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Salesmen waiting for sales to trigger
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Multiple vendors, lesser sales
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Piles of cracker boxes left unsold

 

Bangalore, Oct 17, 2017: Diwali in Bangalore is going to be a quiet one this year with the sale of fire crackers in the city showing a drop.

A tax rate of 28 per cent under GST has hit the sales of fire crackers, which were taxed at 14 per cent under Value Added Tax (VAT) last year.

Prabhaver, firecracker dealer at Hosur road, said “This year, yet again, the sales have gone down. Every year prices increase negligibly but this year because of GST, the prices have gone up by a considerable amount. The customer fails to understand this and thinks we are overcharging them, in spite of the huge discounts.”

The resultant price hike is directly affecting the sale of firecrackers. Price of every firecracker has gone up by a minimum of 10%, excluding the GST effect, said a report.

V. Guruswamy, owner of Nataraj Trading Company that deals in fire crackers said, “People opt to buy loose crackers instead of box sets because the effect of GST is highlighted while buying boxes. For instance a box that used to cost Rs 2500 now costs Rs 2850.”

The untimely rains in Bangalore have been a contributing factor to the decrease in sale of firecrackers.

Radhakrishna, salesman at Nagraj Trading, Sultanpete said, “This year the untimely rain is also reason for low sales. There is a problem to replenish the stock.”

Nowadays, more people in the city are switching to a greener Diwali realising the after effects of bursting crackers. Gunjan Sablani, a tenth grade student said, “Our teachers have encouraged us to celebrate an eco-friendly Diwali this year. They have asked us to light homemade diyas and burst confetti bombs instead of usual loud crackers.”

For the past few years now, online retailers too have been selling fire crackers, who offer a minimum discount of 50 per cent after taking GST into consideration. Raj Shekhar, a customer buying crackers said, “It is more feasible to buy crackers online as the discount is more or less the same at both the places. Also, online we can buy assorted crackers, as the prices of gift boxes have gone up.”

Kshitij, an environmentalist said, “It is good that sale of firecrackers have gone down because most of these factories employ child labour. This, in turn, is reducing our carbon foot print, which is larger positive news.”

 
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