The markets were abuzz with activity on the eve of Vinayaka Chaviti in the city on Tuesday. Kaleswara Rao Market, Patamata, Kothavanthena Centre on Eluru Road, Government Press Road, and Besant road were jam packed with the buyers and hawkers.

The people were seen busy in the last-minute preparations and purchases at apparel and provision stores. The miniature temples, crowns, thrones to seat the Vinayaka idols, and an array of varied decorative items are some of the items that are most sought after.

The markets were flooded with Ganesha idols, decorative materials and special sweets for the festival. Traders, shopkeepers were seen doing brisk business. The shopkeepers displayed their wares in interesting ways to attract the customers.

The soaring prices have dampened the festival mood and spirit of the people.

The prices of Vinayaka idols and other essentials have skyrocketed and are beyond of reach of common man. The Ganesha are being sold anywhere between Rs. 25 and Rs. 300.

The price of ‘patri’, a must for Vinayaka pooja, has touched Rs. 70. Not to mention the prices of fruit. The banana is sold at Rs. 50 per dozen; while an apple is sold at Rs. 20 to Rs. 25, and custard apple is sold at Rs. 40 to Rs. 50 depending upon the size.

“The festival is an occasion of great joy and enthusiasm. But, the soaring prices have played spoilsport,” says Anuradha, a homemaker.

Some voluntary associations have put up pandals at Krishnalanka, Besant Road, Patamata, Durgapuram, Durga Agraharam, Suryaraopeta, and Vambay Colony and other areas.

The pandals were decorated beautifully.

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