‘Chinese’ Diwali cost local artisans dear

A survey by the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry (ASSOCHAM) has revealed that sale of fancy lights, lampshades, rangolis, crackers and other Diwali items, besides Ganesh and Lakshmi idols, sold 45% more than last year.

The market surged with Chinese products which were a hit with consumers, adds the survey. Releasing the ASSOCHAM survey its Secretary General, D S Rawat said local artisans faced stiff competition and seemed worst-hit. Over 78 per cent of customers said Chinese lights were almost 50 per cent cheaper and had more variety. It saved customers 35 per cent of their Diwali budget.

Nearly 72 per cent of traders said the demand for earthen diyas had been dipping year after year. The popularity of China-made lights is because they come cheap and have a wide range.

Nearly 76 per cent of wholesale dealer of gift items said cheap Chinese materials sold like hot cakes. Rawat said Chinese fireworks enter India illegally through Nepal to eat into the Rs 1,800-crore domestic market. Chinese fireworks worth around Rs 250 crore circulate in the Indian market. China- made lightweight idols of gods and goddesses also caught the attention of buyers, added the majority of retailers.

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