Rules mandated for firecracker stalls are being violated with impunity as these are being set up at crowded areas in the town. Stalls have also been put at the gates of schools and religious places, even as rules say that adequate fire-fighting arrangements have to be made. Nabha Gate, Main Market, BSNL Park road etc are all a sea of cracker stalls.
Crackers sales have slumped
“There is considerable decrease in the sale of crackers,” said Munish Kumar, a cracker stall owner. A housewife Sneh Lata said that, “Every year we bought crackers worth Rs 2000, but this time, we plan to spend the money somewhere else.”
Sweets sale down 40%
With the hike in prices of sweets by 15-20%, there is 40% downfall in their sale. “This year business is half of what it was last year,” said Harjinder Kumar, an owner of sweets shop.
Dry fruits prices have also increased 20% with almonds selling at `850 per kg from `700 last year. “We are losing customers,” said Basant, a dry fruit shop owner.
The Barnala Crossing market, famous for potters, is not seeing customers with people going in for Chinese lights.
“Chinese lights are easy on the pocket. A Rs 100 strip of light is enough to decorate the house,” said Suresh Kumar.