SIVAKASI: With Deepavali nearing, several people from across the State are making a beeline to Sivakasi, which is the manufacturing hub of fire-crackers in the country, to buy crackers.
Of late, many people have developed a liking for fancy fire-crackers and started purchasing them on a large-scale, said many cracker-sellers whom this reporter spoke to.
Every year during this festival of lights, the crackers shops are set up on either side of the Sattur- Sivakasi and the Sivakasi- Virudhunagar Roads and all these make-shift establishments make roaring business.
M Karuppasamy of Tirupur, who has come by car to Sivakasi to purchase fire-crackers, said,
“I come here just days ahead of Deepavali to buy crackers for my family, as no festival of lights is complete without them.” He said he has come along with his friends to get the fancy fire-crackers that go up in the sky and emit different colours, they are beautiful to watch.”
“Moreover, my children like only these types of fire- crackers and they have asked me to buy only them. I intend spending nearly `6,000 on those fancy ones,” he added, with a smile.
“Though during this time of the year, several fire-cracker shops are opened across the State, we prefer coming to Sivakasi, as the fire-crackers are cheaper here than in any other place,” said a businessman Gopalakrishnan from Coimbatore. He said he has come along with his family. “When I was young, I used to burst bombs and the walas, but now my children prefer fancy fire-crackers. They are available in different colours, which are feast for the eyes. I feel such fire-crackers are safe, as they do not burst in the ground,” he said.
Nilesh Kanna, a college student from Chennai, said he has come to Sivakasi along with his friends in a car to purchase fire-crackers. He said that last year, he had bought them for `5, 000, but didn’t get value for money, so I decided to reach Sivakasi as the fire-crackers are cheaper here. Initially, I shelled out `6,000, but after seeing the price and the quantity, I decided to spend `3, 000 more. Most of the fire-crackers that I’d bought were fancy ones, as they are colourful and beautiful as they fly into the night sky.”
He said, “I live in an apartment in Chennai, and so I can’t bursts bombs. Hence, this time, it’s only the fancy ones I bought so that they can be lit from the terrace of the apartment building.”
Ganesh, who owns a cracker shop in Sivakasi, said there are only a few more days left for Deepavali, and already many customers were flocking Sivakasi to buy fire-crackers, mostly the fancy ones.
There are different types of fancy fire-crackers ranging from single shot upto 500 shots. The moment the customers enter the shop they look for fancy crackers and buy them in large numbers. Only after purchasing them, they look for others such as flower pots, chakkars, walas, sparklers, bombs etc, Ganesh pointed out.
For this season, over 500 shops would be opened in Virudhunagar district. Several people from the nearby villages in the district get short-term employment (for nearly two months) during the season, said a trader.