Karaikal would be a shoppers’ stop from December 23, with the launch of the month-long Karaikal shopping festival here.

The festival with the stated objective of promoting tourism, and jointly organised by the Puducherry Department of Tourism and the Karaikal Chamber of Commerce, would continue till January 31, 2010.

The Puducherry government has allotted funds to the tune of Rs.14 lakhs that would cover for adverts, hoardings and other promotional campaigns.

Besides promoting tourism, the shopping festival aims to provide platform for the commercial establishment to boost their trade. The participating commercial establishments would be given coupons, the lots for which would be picked up to choose winners at the conclusion of the month-long festival. Unlike the previous years, where lots to pick winners were conduced in Puducherry, this year the district administration proposes to pick up lots from Karaikal.

Karaikal has been allotted over 5,282 prizes. These would include 2 cars, 20 ebikes, 20 domestic tour packages, 40 table top wet grinders, 400 mixers, 400 rice cookers, 400 iron boxes and 4,000 travel bags. The Union Territory of Puducherry with its regions of Karaikal, Mahe and Yanam has been allotted over 26,410 prizes.

Over 4 lakh coupons would be distributed in Karaikal for the shopping fest.

This year, the festival would coincide with the Karaikal Carnival proposed to be held from January 13 to January 17. This is expected to mutually benefit both the fests.

Collector N. Vasantha Kumar released the logo for the Puducherry shopping festival here on Monday. K. Dakshinamoorthy, Assistant Director, Tourism and Ismail, President, Karaikal Chamber of Commerce were among those present. Further, the district administration proposes to hold an orchestra on the eve of New Year at the new beach here to promote tourism.