Hyderabad: Cloth traders say incurring steep losses at Numaish

Nampally: The traders at the ongoing Numaish, specially cloth traders from north India, appear to be deeply disappointed more than ever. Some of the them suffered losses up to 40 per cent owing to various reasons, even as the 45-day long exhibition gears up for the curtains to come down.

At the 80th All India Industrial Exhibition, the cloth traders are running into losses with almost 40 per cent of stock yet to be disposed of. For the last few years, the traders, especially those from Lucknow, Kashmir, Rajasthan, Delhi and other States, are reeling under slump in sales. Irrespectively of the number of visitors, which remained almost the same compared to the previous years, the traders at these stalls can be seen waiting for customers.

According to the stall owners, for the last 2 to 3 years the traders have been taking part in Numaish. They are dejected as customers are showing less interest in purchases year after year.

This year, the traders said they are incurring maximum losses. "With only 2-3 days left for closure of the exhibition, the traders are not able to do business, as 60 per cent of business was seen, this year compared to last few years", said Ahmed Ansari, the owner of Lucknow fabric stall. "Even though there was loss last year, too, most of us believed it was due to fire accident," he added.

While there were various reasons for low trader, the price increase on various items is one of the discouraging factors.

The traders had to shell huge amounts in the form of increase rent by the society, which include insurance, power connection etc. "Due to increase in rent of stalls, we were forced to increase the price on items and customers are not willing to spend more money," said a trader who wish not to be named.

Another Kashmiri Stall owner Zubair Ahmed Khan said that for last 15 years he had been setting up the Kashmiri dresses stall in Numaish. Earlier he used to procure stock twice or thrice. But for last few years, it is limited to one-time procurement.

"Kashmir is facing shutdown for around 6 months due to national issues. As there is no business in Valley some traders hoped to make some money at Numaish. But even this year hardly any customer is seen at stalls," he lamented.

Card swiping machines, ATMs deal major blow

As the exhibition is set to end on February 15, the traders are hopeful that the business will pick up. While most of the customers are willing to purchase for last days discounts, the traders are ready to yield on maximum markdown.

But the customers who are visiting the stalls to purchase are unable to do digital transactions, as the traders are facing technical difficulties like card swiping in machines, owing to network related problems in the premises of exhibition. "During afternoon hours, the machine is working, but as the number of visitors go up there is no network and jamming the signal," said a trader.

Shabbir Ali, Kashmiri Art stall, said that for getting cash, the traders are going along with the customer to an ATM machine, sometimes outside for the transaction. "The ATM machine in the exhibition premises is also running out of cash, so we are forced to go out of exhibition for the transactions", he added.

Chandrashekhar, a customer, said that he would like to purchase Lucknowi suits. But when he tried for digital transaction with his card, the machine failed to support. "My family is willing to buy, but we have to leave without purchasing," he added.

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