in focus:coimbatore Lok Sabha Election 2019

Keeping it colourful with poll paraphernalia

Political shades: Shawls embossed with symbols of political parties on sale in Coimbatore on Wednesday.

Political shades: Shawls embossed with symbols of political parties on sale in Coimbatore on Wednesday.   | Photo Credit: M. Periasamy

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Election season means brisk business for the textile sector

With the general election around the corner, it is time for political parties to procure campaign supplies like T-shirts, caps and flags for their cadre. That means brisk business for the many textile printing units and traders in the region.

According to S. Mahesh Kumar of Tirupur, who has been supplying printed materials to political parties for the last five years, flags make up the majority of the goods in demand. Then there are caps, T-shirts, mufflers and placards. “We printed the textile materials and kept them ready for sale almost three months ago. If a political party wants [them] in bulk quantity, we cannot print [them] immediately,” he said. “During election season, orders are up almost 50%,” he added.

Orders from new parties

The demand for flags varies from 1,000 to 10,000 pieces, depending on the constituency. Over the past year, several small and newly formed parties have been making orders for flags, of a minimum quantity of 2,500. “We have printed flags for at least 10 such new parties in the last one year,” Mr. Kumar said.

His father has been in the business for over two decades, and the two have printing units as well. “New printing technologies are available in Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat. While simple logos are printed in Tirupur, the rest are printed at units in these two States and brought here for sale,” he said.

Arumugam Gopalan, another printing unit owner in Tirupur, said the demand was relatively higher during the Assembly election when compared to the Lok Sabha election. While orders for T-shirts and knitted material come to Tirupur, those for printing on towels, mufflers, etc. go to places like Erode and Karur. “So far, we are yet to see a jump in orders this year. Usually, the demand starts one or two days after the election dates are announced,” Mr. Gopalan said.

Both Mr. Gopalan and Mr. Kumar said prices may be slightly higher this year because of GST.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2020 2:24:46 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/lok-sabha-2019/keeping-it-colourful-with-poll-paraphernalia/article26526055.ece

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