Making small investments, many earn sufficiently during the 46-day fare
If you think ‘Numaish’ is all about traders who make big investments and earn some profits, then you are mistaken. Scores of petty vendors who hang around outside the exhibition grounds put in small investments and earn sufficiently during the 46-day fare.
Mohammed Haneef (27), an Intermediate dropout, sells socks near the Ajanta Gate entrance and earns between Rs. 300 and Rs. 400 a day. “Setting up a stall inside the ‘Numaish’ involves investing thousands of rupees and it is beyond my means . So I prefer to stand outside and conduct the business. Most of the time police are sympathetic towards us, but sometimes they shove us away,” says Haneef.
Around three hundred odd vendors eke out their livelihood by selling items like balloons, popcorn and toys outside the Numaish everyday. The one-and-a-half-month-long fare not only guarantees good earnings to them, but also regular business.
While a majority of the vendors are professionals, a few unemployed youths also make small investments and trade here. Kashifullah (22) sells eatables and earns about Rs. 300 a day. “I buy ‘chikki’ packets from the wholesale market at Begum Bazaar and sell it. This way I make some money,” says Kashif, who claims to be a degree student.
Many women also try out their luck here by selling small toys and popcorn brought from wholesale markets. Sabiya Begum, a mother of three, sells popcorn and earns around Rs. 250 a day. Her earnings double on weekends and holidays. “I am doing business here for the last seven years. In the past my husband used to trade here but after his death I have taken his place,” she says.
On the other hand, the visitors are also happy with their presence as these vendors are synonymous with the ‘Numaish’ and the articles they sell are not usually available inside. “Certain items like confectionary, soft toys are overpriced inside. So we prefer the vendors conducting business outside. It helps us save money too,” feels a visitor.