MUMBAI: In spite of challenges like the economic slump and floods across the state, the sale of Ganpati idols in Maharashtra this year is expected to cross the Rs 200 crore mark.
According to sources, at least 22 lakh idols have already been sold in just 12 out of 36 districts in the state. They also said that though there was a general dip of around 10 per cent in the demand, primarily due to floods, the cost of clay idols have gone up by around 22 to 30 per cent due to Goods and Services Tax (GST) on the raw material pushing the overall turnover figures to the higher side. There are several factors involved in the business of idols and costs of each of these vary every year like labour cost, cost of paints, material used for idols and efforts to protect the idols from rains etc.
In the dry areas like Ahmednagar, the costs remained low this year while the sales were better due to increased demand after the floods, said Jaykumar Rokade, an artist who runs a studio to make Ganesh idols in Ahmednagar.
“We saved almost 15 per cent on cost due to dry weather. But, the sales dipped due to floods in Kolhapur where we didn’t send idols this year,” Rokade said.