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HindustanTimes Fri,29 Aug 2014

Sending Diwali gifts abroad: Tradition takes virtual route to NRIs’ hearts

Richa Srivastava, Hindustan Times  Lucknow, November 13, 2012
First Published: 10:30 IST(13/11/2012) | Last Updated: 10:37 IST(13/11/2012)

A box of mouth-watering besan ladoo and kaju barfi, a set of embellished diyas, a bandhanwar and a rangoli- these traditional Indian gifts have added to the cheer of many Indians living abroad this Diwali, thanks to the online gifting trend that has seen a steep rise in India.

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“Sending gifts to family members in India has been a trend among NRIs for long. But now the reverse trend, Indians sending gifts abroad, has picked up,” says Manan Sharma, who is into online gifting trade for nearly a decade now. Sending gifts to  friends and relatives residing in different parts within the country is also is picking up. The orders have increased by nearly 50% since last year, as per the estimates of online gift traders.

“When physical distances increase, a gift from the native place brings cheer. My son who is settled in USA loves the traditional items that have always been a part of family celebrations during festivals,” says Asha Srivastava, a resident of Indira Nagar.

The trend is not just limited to expensive gift items. Desi sweets are also a great hit in the online gift business market. Ravindra Gupta of Chhappan Bhog says, “It becomes tough to handle the orders as sweets are perishable. Only those are sent overseas that have good shelf life. The orders pour in from all parts of the country.”

Diwali gifting is not just limited to Diwali day. An equally good number of orders are placed for Bhaiyya Dooj that follows the festival. Manan says, “There is a tough fight between Raksha Bandhan and Diwali, the orders for which continue till Bhaiyya Dooj. My firm alone has bagged thousands of orders for the occasion.”

Starting from $10 for gifts to Rs. 1,250 for sweets, there is no end to the upper limit for gifts when it comes to near ones.  “People go in for gift hampers and get them made as per their taste,” said Ravindra.


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