Anyone walking or driving on the Jeppu-Marnamikatta Road would have noticed the wares hawked by Babloo and Tinku. The two boys, in their early twenties, sell cane chairs and ceramic pots. Of the two, Babloo is a bit talkative.
He says the two have come to Mangalore from Fatehpur Sikri, Agra.
They sell the cane chairs, which they make themselves, and the pots, which they buy from Bulandhshar in Uttar Pradesh.
They took to selling the chairs and pots because they did not want to work as farmers, which is what their families are engaged in. Neither did they want to work as construction workers. Babloo says he went to school but does not want to reveal till which class he had studied. Unable to get any other job, they put to use the skill of making cane chairs which they learnt from observing their elders.
They go from city to city, “visiting places and doing some business,” says Babloo.
He says business is a little low in Mangalore now but he hopes it will pick up before Deepawali. The pots are priced between Rs. 50 and Rs. 1,200. They are able to sell three chairs a day. But on some days, there is no business. If they are lucky, they sell four chairs in a day. It is the same with the ceramic pots.