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Posted at: Dec 7, 2018, 1:16 AM; last updated: Dec 7, 2018, 1:16 AM (IST)

PITEX opens gates for shoppers, traders

PITEX opens gates for shoppers, traders
A trader sets bulbs in order during PITEX in Amritsar on Thursday. Tribune photo: Vishal Kumar

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, December 5

The 13th edition of the annual Punjab International Trade Expo (PITEX) began here on Thursday. The five-day shopping and business fair was inaugurated by Education Minister OP Soni.

The expo, which had started as an attempt to boost the bilateral trade between India and Pakistan and attract crowd to Pakistani stalls, will be held without any participation from across the border third year in a row.

With footfall being mild on the first day, the international arcade, this year, hosts exhibitors from Turkey, Afghanistan, Egypt, Singapore and Thailand.

Thailand has the maximum participation with 20 stalls of décor items of every day products such as accessories and dry flowers. The Indian arcade has handicrafts and handlooms from Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana and other states. Mild steel artifacts and handcrafts from a Jodhpur-based team of artistes were a major highlight.

While officials expect the number of visitors will be more this year as compared to last year’s aprrox 2.5 lakh.

Local shoppers are missing Pakistani stalls. “Pakistani suits, juttis and other items were the biggest attraction of PITEX. We used to host guests from Delhi, who specially used to visit and shop from Pakistani stalls. We hope that they once again become a part of it,” said Ridhi Sharma, a shopper, who had come along with her mother.

Yousof, an exhibitor from Istanbul, Turkey, is happy with his second outing at PITEX. He has put up a grand display of the traditional Turkish lamps made of ceramic and hand cut glass.

Colourful and beautiful chandeliers and ceramic plates, evil eye artifacts and lamps attacked a large number of visitors on Day 1.

“I loved coming to Amritsar as last year, we had received a great response. This time, we have brought delicate designs as per the taste and requirements of our customers here,” he added.

The lamps take two to three days to be made as glass is hand cut into small pieces. Thereafter, these put together to create such delicate designs.

“Each piece can cost anything between Rs5,000 and Rs50,000,” he said.

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