Tribune News Service
Ghazipur, February 13
It is not even noon, but the Ghazipur flower market wears a deserted look. Most of the shop owners are waiting for customers. “We are sitting idle,” says Manoj, a helper at Virender Florist.
Next to him is Abhay Deol, owner of Shri Sai Shraddha Saburi Pushp Bhandar. Deol says the entire market is hit. “You wouldn’t have been able to step into this place in these days last year. It was jam-packed,” Deol says.
“First lockdown hurt us and now it’s the farmer agitation. Customers from nearby areas, like Indirapuram, are not coming. The business is down by at least 70% than last year,” he adds. According to Virender, owner of Virender Florist, “I had to throw flowers worth Rs 80,000 on January 26. Nobody could come during the rally.”
Rahul Yadav, a partner in LS Florist, says he had to throw flowers worth over Rs 2 lakh due to dearth of buyers. “The rates have shot up because of Valentine’s Day, but it is not enough,” he explains. “Our sales also depend on the wedding season. There are no auspicious days other than February 16 for wedding this month. Lockdown, then ‘kisan andolan’ and now this,” he rues.
Scheduled Castes had backed Cong in 2017