|It's a tangy Tuesday pic by BlogAdda|
Diwali is just round the corner and the surrounding of our city is back into the festive spirit. Diwali is a festival of lights, rongolis, gifts and sweets. It is that festive time of the year, where we decorate and lit up our houses. Paper Kandeels and rustic mud diyas and beautiful torans are all time favorites, irrespective of whatever there may be in the offing.
Whenever the “festival of lights” comes, the first thing that comes in mind is Diya (Lamps). The streets, shops, shopping centers or open markets on footpaths are all flooded with well adorned diyas, beautifully crafted and colorful kandeels and those eye-catching torans. In fact one will definitely be spoilt by choice going by the range and diversity on display for sure.
However I would like to quote a small concern here related to normal Diwali Shopping and way of celebrating Diwali.
While roaming in an open market in my city, I saw some ladies and small vendors selling diyas that were strikingly beautiful. While looking at the different diyas, I enquired for the prices. However I noticed the woman (who was selling those diyas) was already involved in bargaining with a lady customer who was evidently wealthy and visibly not happy with prices. What shocked me more…she was asking two more Diyas in the same price which the frail lady couldn’t afford. Let alone her rude offensive tone of bargaining, it seemed as if she was doing a favor stopping by her shop. Later she left without purchasing any diya.
My guess was right. The lady turned out to be really rich as she was entering into her black Honda City.
Excuse me Madam…I have something to ask you?
She turned her head as she heard me.
What made you feel those diyas were really expensive? Don’t we pay much more than that if we buy them from a shopping Mall?
She was awkward but still maintained her rude face intact and then said…I don’t like them. So I didn’t buy. It’s none of your business.
OH!! Really!! Because you “Didn’t like them” that’s why you wanted “two more in the same price…right”?
She was really left with red faced.
Few days' back I had bought a well packed four beautiful Diyas (@129/pack of four) from a shopping center at a mall. I had paid the price that was quoted in the tag. Need not to say there was no scope for bargain as the price in the tag was fixed.
In fact it's not just one case. Just imagine in a mall or at any affluent place, we never question the strange pricing of anything. In fact we don't mind spending some extra bug while ordering a bowl of soup in a prestigious restaurant or having branded ice-creams or puff up money buying popcorns in theatres which is owned by big corporate.
Did we ever question or bargain while paying abnormal prices? But yet we satisfy our urge to bargain with these small vendors who work for their livelihood especially when the prices are quite reasonable.
Why do we almost shrink our wallet while buying something from these small vendors? They don't have much margin. Hardly will it cost around 10-20 rupees extra to us. Can't we afford this much to lighten a depriver's house especially when we pay much more than this for parking our cars in a mall?
This is the reality. In fact in the last few years, the lives of these small vendors and street marketers has really pushed to a level depth with the invading of Chinese lights, electric lamps, substituting a big share of handmade diyas. Even malls with branded and well packed diyas are taking away much of their customers for those "Handmade diyas" as well.
Unlike a large corporate shopping mall, these people literally struggle for their livelihood. Need not to say in a hope to brighten our Diwali they literally burn their sweat and blood to make those diyas and decorate them. They wait for these festive seasons in a hope to make some extra money. Most of them even suffer from Silicosis (potter's rot) - a disease that occur due to long term exposure to dust and clay as well.
In Diwali we give buxis almost as a ritual to those people who work for us throughout the year like our maids, milkman, paperwala etc. Shouldn't we treat these small vendors as well in the same way?
It's an irony that people who work hard for making beautiful diyas to lighten our houses actually struggle with darkness in Diwali evening. Isn’t the maker of Lamp, deserve light first? We must give this a genuine thought!
Let’s not bargain hard with small vendors while buying toran, kandeels or diyas from them. Let’s buy some earthen diya as well. Let’s help them brighten their Deepavali by paying whatever they charge because that will give a wider smile on the faces of their children. After all Diwali is a festival of spreading “Light of happiness” and helping the underprivileged as well.
Let’s give it a thought this Diwali.Let’s Lit Up their Houses…Lets don’t bargain with them!!