January 27, 2012

Republic Day drama: Who the hell cares? Indians bought more national flags during Anna Hazare fast

The tricolour sale this Republic Day was a dampener, say stationary shop owners and flag manufacturers. Traders note that the tricolour sold better during the Anna agitation as against now.

Rameth, a seller at Paradise signal said, "I sell flags here every year. I buy them for Re 1 each and sell them for Re 2 each. This time, I only made a profit of Rs 200 because very few people bought the flags this year."

Even the suppliers of cloth flags reported a drop in sales, "We manufacture silk flags with the Ashoka Chakra embroidered on it. Though last year the sales were pretty good, this time, it is almost half of last year's figures as we managed to sell only five to ten flags," said Pankaj Agarwal, proprietor, Agarwal flag Store.

Giridhar Vyas of Bhagwan Cards store said, "We had purchased flags for around Rs 5,000 to 6,000 and managed to sell flags worth around Rs 4,000 only. On top of this, we also have last year's stock remaining. Our profit margin from selling these flags is only around 20 percent and sales this year are down by at least 30 percent."

With no evident reason behind this drop in numbers, Giridhar blamed the Telangana agitation, "I think because of the Telangana agitation people prefer to go out of town for every holiday, hence greatly reducing the number of potential customers."

However, it seems that people were inspired to buy the national flag when a strong sense of patriotism fuelled by a nation-wide uproar was in the air. Shop owners reported that sales of flags during the Anna Hazare movement were much higher when compared to the week prior to Republic Day.

Vidya Sagar, sales manager, Sri Vigneshwara stationery store said, "Sales this year have fallen by around 20 percent. During the Anna Hazare movement a few months back, we managed to sell 80 percent of the stock including the remainders from last year's Republic day and Independence Day stock. We sold over 500 pieces in a week at that time, whereas in the past week, we sold only around 300."


But despite that some duffer articles said: India celebrates Republic Day with great enthusiasm
Some bloggers said why did we spend so much on Republic Day