Desi firecrackers do brisk business this Diwali in Dehradun | dehradun | Hindustan Times
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Desi firecrackers do brisk business this Diwali in Dehradun

Amid calls for the boycott of Chinese products on Diwali, indigenously-manufactured firecrackers witnessed brisk business in the local markets of Dehradun this festive season

dehradun Updated: Oct 18, 2017 20:08 IST
Neha Pant
Locals purchase firecrackers in Dehradun on the eve of Diwali on Wednesday.
Locals purchase firecrackers in Dehradun on the eve of Diwali on Wednesday.(Vinay Santosh Kumar/HT)

Amid calls for the boycott of Chinese products on Diwali, indigenously-manufactured firecrackers witnessed brisk business in the local markets of Dehradun this festive season.

Traders selling crackers in the local markets said this year Diwali revellers “largely” preferred ‘Made in India’ crackers despite Chinese crackers being “fancier and cheaper” than many Indian brands.

Aware of the boycott, many cracker traders had refrained from procuring Chinese crackers ahead of Diwali, but even those who had the previous year’s stocks of Chinese crackers reported lukewarm response in the sale.

Though banned in India, Chinese crackers easily find their way into the country and remained in high demand for many years due to their low-cost and high performance. However, their demand has seen a drastic drop over the past two years, traders said.

“Even last year, there was an intense wave of anti-Chinese goods floating in the market right ahead of Diwali (in the wake of China’s support to Pakistan) and it remained the same this time, too. Most people specifically asked for desi patakhe (local crackers),” Madan Lal, a cracker seller near Balliwala Chowk, told HT.

Crackers made in India – most of them from Sivakasi in Tamil Nadu – dominated the market this Diwali, he added.

“There’s a lot of resentment against Chinese products…even those who have stocks are either selling them as desi patakhe or are keeping them hidden until specifically asked for,” said Mohd Nasir, a trader on Chakrata Road.

A survey report released by the Associated Chambers of Commerce & Industry in India (Assocham) earlier this month had projected that the sale of Chinese products in India might fall by 40-45% as compared to Diwali last year. The Assocham had interacted with wholesalers, traders and retailers in 10 Indian cities including Dehradun to gauge the demand for Chinese products.

“We didn’t obtain Chinese crackers for sale sensing the strong anti-Chinese mood...plus, there had also been many complaints about their quality in the past,” said Parth Garg, a trader on Kanwali Road.

Ahead of Diwali, many green organisations ran campaigns in Dehradun appealing to locals to celebrate eco-friendly and cracker-free Diwali.