Karimnagar: Business establishments have lost their charm due to lack of customers. Right from big shopping malls to small garment stores used to jam-pack with customers during Bathukamma and Dasara festival season.
However, hardly few customers are seen hitting shops purchasing clothes and other materials for the festivals due to the Covid-19 pandemic which has marred all the businesses across the world.
Unable to cope with lockdown period, a majority of the companies have cut salaries of employees for a few months while some have removed manpower resulting in a majority of the people working in different sectors losing their employment.
Though the situation has gradually been gaining momentum following the decline of corona cases, people have not gained that much money to spend on shopping and other luxuries.
So, a majority of the business establishments have failed to reach at least 50 percent mark of sales when compared to last year.
A big shopping mall in the town used to do about Rs 3 crore business during the time of Bathukamma and Dasara festival season. However, its business had been reduced to 50 percent so far. The in-charge of the shopping mall said middle and below middle class people were their customers. However, they do not have money to spend on shopping owing to the lean times. People were circumspecting on spending money on shopping. Earlier, people used to do more shopping compared to this year. but, now they are forced to stifle their shopping desire for this Dasara, said the merchant whose shopping mall have the customers from Ramagundam coal belt area, Jagitial, Sircilla and other areas. But, it has not happened this time around.
Considering all these issues, they have also not taken up any advertisement campaign to attract customers, he informed.
Interestingly, the staff of clothing shops and malls were also paid only 50 percent salary for three months. They used to get Dipawali bonus every year. However, they have been informed that there is no bonus this year. Though shopping malls are bringing stocks depending upon sales, there are no stocks in branded garment showrooms.
Owner of a famous branded showroom in Karimnagar, which has barely recorded 40 percent business instead of Rs 10 lakh business during Dasara festival, said that the company has not manufactured and supplied any new stock for this festival season. When have asked for new stock, but they asked us to maintain with the available stock. Customers are coming into the shop but going out with disappointment due to lack of stock, he informed.
A private employee, L Shankar, said that every year, he used to purchase clothes for his entire family. But this year, he could shop only for his daughter.
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