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Footpath shops drawing huge number of Eid shoppers too

  • Published at 01:19 am June 13th, 2018
  • Last updated at 02:20 am June 14th, 2018
People doing their shopping from the makeshift shops on the footpath in front of the Gausia Market, adjacent to the Dhaka New Market Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

In Dhaka, people have been seen crowded around the makeshift shops in Nilkhet, Motijheel, Paltan, Jatrabari, Sadarghat, Gulistan, Bangabazar, Farmgate, Mirpur 1, Mirpur 10, Mohakhali, Fakirapool, Mouchak, Rampura and Badda areas, to complete their last-minute shopping

Makeshift shops on footpaths and open spaces in capital Dhaka and other major cities across the country are doing a brisk business, as the low-income and poor people are crowding them, shopping items at cheap rates amid an Eid shopping frenzy.

These makeshift stalls are seen as hotspots for cheap jeans and gabardine pants, jerseys, shirts, t-shirts, panjabis, trousers, footwear, belts, caps, lungis, wallets, children clothes, girls' attires, cosmetics and toys.

With the Fifa World Cup 2018 scheduled to kick off just a few days before Eid-ul-Fitr, many people, mostly the youth and children, are also crowding these shops to buy the jerseys of their favourite football teams.

The prices of these items are much cheaper and affordable than those in the shopping malls.

Traders said the jerseys of the Argentina and Brazil football teams are in great demand and they are making good profit selling them.

According to reports received from district correspondents, makeshift shops in different cities and district towns, including Chittagong, Khulna, Barisal, Rangpur, Sylhet and Comilla, are abuzz with customers for Eid shopping and the forthcoming World Cup.

People crowd the makeshift shops on the footpaths to do Eid shopping in Chittagong New Market area on June 13, 2018 | Focus Bangla

Makeshift shop owners, however, voiced dismay at the sporadic rain that is greatly hampering their business.

In the capital, people were seen crowding around the makeshift shops in Nilkhet, Motijheel, Paltan, Jatrabari, Sadarghat, Gulistan, Bangabazar, Farmgate, Mirpur-1, Mirpur-10, Mohakhali, Fakirapool, Mouchak, Rampura and Badda areas on Monday and Tuesday to complete their last-minute shopping.

Abdul Hakim, a private bank night guard, who had come to buy Eid clothes for his son at Gulistan, said, "Quality products are available here at a cheap rate. I bought a shirt here at Tk400, which would not have been possible for even Tk1,000 from any market."

"We're at the footpath shops for Eid shopping as the items are cheap here, compared to markets and shopping centres," said Anwara Begum, an RMG worker, at Mouchak.

Alamgir Hossain, a Dhaka College student said he first visited some stalls at shopping malls to buy a denim pant, a Brazil jersey but failed as the prices were very high. 

"Shop owners there were demanding Tk2,000 to Tk3,000 for a pant and Tk1,200 for a jersey. I then came to Nilkhet and bought a denim pant for Tk500 and a jersey for Tk600,” he said.

People shopping from the hawkers on the footpath in front of the Gausia Market in Dhaka | Mehedi Hasan/Dhaka Tribune

A number of vendors, especially those who sell jerseys along with other items said their sales volumes and profit this year are higher than the previous years.

Kamal Hossain, a vendor who sells different types of pants, shirts, jerseys and panjabis on the footpath at Motijheel said he made a good profit this time with huge sales of his ware.

"We could have done better business had there been no rain," he added.

Nazmul Hossain, a salesman of a jersey shop at New Market said: “This year, the demand of jerseys is a bit higher than the previous years due to the festive season. We're witnessing a huge rush of customers and the sales are good."

The vendors alleged that they have to pay toll to local political leaders and law enforcers to continue running their businesses on the footpaths.