Aralia (West Tripura), Oct 4: With Durga Puja
---celebrated as Navaratri in some parts of the country---around the corner, people are gearing up for the nine-day celebrations. But in Tripura, the festival acts as a gateway to make fortunes for businessmen.
One such business that makes profit during the festival is the age old cottage industry of making of garlands and decorative items, which are used for adorning the idols as well as pandals (make shift temples) that creates a colourful atmosphere all around.
Narayan Rudra Paul, a resident of Aralia area in Agartala, is one such businessman who is trying to cash in on the festival.
Around twenty years back, Narayan started this business in an 'unorganised' manner, but at present it is picking up and growing fast.
Paul has not only his engaged family members in his business but has also shown the path to many others. In fact today, he is an inspiration to many in this little landlocked state.
His works are highly appreciated by the people and there is a huge demand for his products throughout the state.
Narayan states that has also employed several women in his neighbourhood who want earn enough to cover their children's education expenses.
"We make garlands, decoration and marriage items. Around 15 employees are engaged here and the demand of our products increases during the festival season. Few local women in our village also work for an extra income which helps in their children's education," Narayan Rudra Paul said.
"We earn by making garlands and also use the money for educating our children. During the festival season the earning is more and work load is also more so have to come little early after completion of the household chores. We earn around Rs 5000 a month," Jharna Saha, an employee said.
Throughout the year they wait for the festival to arrive as huge demand is seen during this season.
This has not only helped the business flourish in the state but has helped artisans to fetch more money for their raw materials. Despite of high raw material cost, the artisans' states, they still make good business as it's the festival time and there is huge demand for their products.
The workers have huge work pressure as there is lack of skilled workers, so they have to work day and night to complete the orders on time.
This year the demand for the decorative items has increased than the previous year in state. As there has been an increase in the number of performing pujas (prayers) given the state was once under militant threats
However, shortage of skilled workers remains the biggest hurdle in their business.
The artisans are of the view that if they get some financial help from the government in the form of loans then their business would flourish by several folds. (ANI