Kite-sellers bank on Makar Sankrant rush for sales surge
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The old city, replete with several kite-sellers, are banking on the festival of Makar Sankrant for improvement in their dwindling sales.
According to estimates provided by sellers, they sell a few lakh metallic kites i.e. kites made of metallic paper during the year.
The kite selling business is primarily concentrated in the Raviwar Peth area, but over the last few years, sales have dropped drastically. However, this year, there is noticeable buzz as far as sales are concerned.
Take the case of Sayyed Muzzafar Kazi, a third generation kite maker and seller. His shop, Kazi Patang Depot, located in the bylanes of Raviwar Peth, is home to a wide range of kites in vibrant colours.
"We used to have 25-30 workers in my workshop 10 years ago, but numbers have reduced sharply now. We have only two or three workers now. Numbers have dwindled and sales too have reduced, but we are hopeful of good sales this time around," he says, adding due to paucity of manpower, he is roping in workers from Kolkata and Hyderabad.
Some of the hot designs this year are kites adorned with pictures of film stars. Costing from only Rs 2 and going up to Rs 50 these kites as Kazi mentions are a hit with youngsters.
He said that costing is done based on materials used to make kites. Salman Khan's Ek Tha Tiger and Bodyguard are some of the biggest sellers this time around. Further down the road is the Royal Patang Depot, another third generation kite store.
Its owner Akbar Memon dexterously spins the glass coated strings also called manjas, used to fly the kites, as he haggles around with customers for selling his merchandise.
Holding up his hands, covered with sticking plaster, owing to the cuts from the thread, he says, "This happens while rolling the thread. In fact it is also a sign of the fact that the thread is of good quality."