With the decline within the Covid instances and upbeat market sentiment, the financial system of Bengal is hoping for a robust comeback driving on the festive season. As Durga Puja fervour units in, the ‘Pujo-shopping’ spree has returned.
A latest report by the British Council pegged the same old artistic financial system round Durga Puja at Rs 32,377 crore, which is about 2.78 per cent of the GDP. The 2020 festive season was hit arduous by the pandemic and now the financial system is wanting ahead to a revival.ECONOMIC DEMAND AND RECOVERY IN BENGALThe combination demand in 2021-22 within the state has reached pre-Covid ranges, as per an estimate by the Indian Chamber of Commerce. “But the sectoral distribution is different, pointing to trends of a K-shaped economic recovery and not a V-shaped one,” stated Vikash Agarwal, president of Indian Chamber of Commerce.ALSO READ | What is the importance of Shashthi, Saptami, Ashtami, Navami, and Dashami?“While government employees have income growth and have been able to maintain spending momentum, all private-sector employees are not so fortunate. Some are coping with job loss and some with wage cuts, while some have very high incomes. The result is, along with income inequality, there is demand inequality, the demand is more in the informal economy, which is much more affordable with cash purchases without GST and formal invoicing,” he added.RETAIL SECTOR SEES GROWTHRetail gross sales, the best contributor to the Durga Puja financial system, in accordance with the report, was Rs 27,364 crore in 2019. In 2020, it dropped as a result of pandemic. This yr, nonetheless, the department stores within the state are witnessing a surge, resulting in gross sales figures amounting to greater than the pre-pandemic numbers.Shopping Centre Association of India (jap area) chairman and Merlin Group chairman, Sushil Mohta stated, “Malls are back to 2018-19 footfall. Since Bengal has controlled COVID quite well and malls are maintaining proper Covid protocol, people prefer malls to the streets now due to safety regulations. Economy 90% back on track.”ALSO READ | Kasundi Maach to Chicken Malaikari, 5 Durga Puja particular recipes“Food & beverage and retail sales are back to 90% of normal. The rest can be covered once good cinemas come up and cine-goers start frequenting malls,” he added. The worth of the movies and leisure business was pegged at Rs 53.2 crore within the report.Sushil Mohta stated the general financial system of Bengal is prone to maintain regular after Durga Puja if the third Covid wave is saved at bay.The footfall at South City, Kolkata’s largest mall, over the 2 weekends previous Durga Puja has been greater than 2 lakh. F&B and retail gross sales are again to nearly 100 per cent of regular, he stated.ICC president Vikash Agarwal stated, “We expect slow growth in the retail sector and gradual reaching of pre-Covid levels by April next year.”Speaking to IndiaAs we speak.in, Acropolis and Homeland Mall General Manager Ok Vijayan stated, “The last weekend before Puja witnessed fantastic footfall. Acropolis Mall witnessed a brisk footfall of 25,000 even on Saturday. We are expecting a surge till Puja revelry begins. There has been an increase of 20 per cent in footfall over last year and 5 per cent increase over 2019.”WATCH | Good information: Muslims arrange Durga puja pandal for Hindu households in Kolkata“The sales have been impressive, too. However, we just touched the sales volume of 2019 this Puja. Most of the brands in Acropolis clocked at least 25 per cent increase in sales over last year.”Even although retail spending has elevated with the rise within the buying energy of particular person clients, the guts of Durga Puja idol-making and lightweight set up industries is but to see a ray of hope.IDOL-MAKING INDUSTRY STILL IN DOLDRUMS Idol-making, which contributed Rs 260-280 crore, in accordance with the report, hasn’t picked up as anticipated. Prodyut Paul from Gora Chand Paul and Sons, one of many members of Kumartuli Idolmakers’ Association, stated in 2020, lockdown pressured down enterprise to 50 per cent-70 per cent.WATCH | Bengal gears up for Durga Puja celebrations“We sold idols worth Rs 2 lakh for 1 lakh last year. But this year it’s even worse. Clubs are not ready to pay even Rs 50,000 for idols worth Rs 2 lakh. Clubs get Rs 50,000 from the government. But the benefit doesn’t trickle down to the idol-makers. Moreover, many clubs don’t even clear previous year’s dues,” he stated.“Our workshop took only three orders this year. This year we haven’t even exported idols. Some workshops are taking in more orders by incurring losses to retain customers. But that’s not sustainable,” he added.LIGHTING INDUSTRY FACES ‘POWERCUT’Similar is the case with West Bengal’s famed gentle set up business in Chandannagar. Babu Pal, a veteran artist with over 20 years of expertise, informed IndiaAs we speak.in that this yr is worse than 2020.“This year there are no orders from outside the state. Organisers from states such as Jharkhand, Delhi, Mumbai, and Assam said they did not have permission to host Durga Puja. Business is down by nearly 50 per cent. If a third wave hits, we may have to wrap up business by next year,” stated Babu Pal, who boasts of getting lit up celebrity Amitabh Bachchan’s bungalows Prateeksha, Janak and Jalsa.‘ECONOMIC OUTLOOK: STABILITY’ On a constructive be aware, nonetheless, West Bengal was one of many solely two states in India to document over Rs 10 lakh crore of GSDP (Gross State Domestic Product) throughout the pandemic-hit yr, stated Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant. The different state was Tamil Nadu.ALSO READ | Jaipur: Covid tips have an effect on Durga Puja celebrations within the cityLast yr, Bengal recorded a constructive development of 1.2 per cent.Vikas Agarwal stated, “The overall outlook for Bengal after Durga Puja is economic stability. The total investment proposals received by the West Bengal Industrial Development Corporation (WBIDC) was Rs 4,064 from January to December 2020. The total investment, taking into account that of the IT sector, would push up the figure by Rs 3,000 crore. We look forward to their implementation.”