Festive season fails to cheer traders as sales down by 50%

Festive season fails to cheer traders as sales down by 50 percentThe festival season has failed to bring joy to the business community in Jammu as Diwali “sales have gone down by 50 per cent” this year.
The city markets were nowhere near to usual business as people were “judicious” in spending money.
The shopkeepers said the business was all time low this Diwali.
“We generally have sales worth over Rs 1 lakh during Diwali but this year, it was not even Rs 50,000. The purchasing power of customers has come down drastically which has affected the entire business community of the town,” said Aarush Mahajan, who owns a shop in Gumat Bazaar.
“People spent very judicially and most of the people left the shop after enquiring the prices of the products,” Mahajan added.
Most of the shopkeepers had taken loan to fill their shops with gifts and other items ahead of Diwali. But due to low sales they are now in shock.
The products have not been sold while the interest on loan is accruing with every passing day.
“I had taken loan of Rs 50,000 to fill my shop with decorative items ahead of Diwali but due to low sale, I could not pay back the loan in time. Now, I have to pay more interest on the actual amount,” said Rajesh Sharma, owner of a general store.
“This Diwali did not bring anything for the Jammu shopkeepers. Everyone is in loss. Stocks worth lakhs of rupees have been dumped and there will be no buyer for it till next Diwali,” Sharma added.
President, Chamber of Commerce and Industries, Jammu, Rakesh Gupta blamed the state government for low sales.
“The business during the festival season declined by 50 per cent due to lack of money flow in the markets,” said Gupta.
“The main reason for low business this Diwali is the lack of government projects in the state. It has reduced the purchasing power as a large segment in Jammu is dependent on the state government spending,” he added.
Gupta also attributed low sales to the Best Price (Walmart), which was running its business in “violation of agreement”.
He alleged the wholesale store was providing door-to-door membership and had captured the retail market of the city.

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