They're a cut above the rest

Intricately carved dining table at Anna Nagar in Tiruchi.

Intricately carved dining table at Anna Nagar in Tiruchi.  

GONE ARE the days when costly furniture was displayed only in well-decorated mega shops. The presence of a group of pavement hawkers, hailing from Andhra Pradesh, selling intricately carved and costly wooden furniture on roadsides in various parts of Tiruchi city has been a matter of surprise for the local people.

Meagre income from selling bamboo baskets forced the thirty-five-year-old Ganga, hailing from the sleepy Chenoor hamlet of Nellore district in Andhra Pradesh to try and introduce some innovation. Ganga was thinking of switching over to other trade. The same was the condition of a majority of the families of this village.

On the suggestion of a friend, he tried his hand at procuring and marketing furniture manufactured by a Bangalore firm. Some years ago, along with a few other locals of his village, he started visiting various parts of the country on special occasions for marketing the furniture.

During this Deepavali season, a group of Chenoor families preferred to visit Tiruchi. They set their temporary camps at Mannarpuram, Annanagar, Karur bypass road junction. Furniture, dining table sets, mirror stands etc, the price of which ranged from Rs.800 to Rs.11,000 have been displayed by them on roadsides unmindful of the inclement weather. Ganga said that these goods were directly brought by lorries from Bangalore and unloaded in the busy areas. They came here 10 days prior to Deepavali. Till Deepavali they managed to do good business and after the festival, there is a slump.

By Syed Muthahar

Photo: R.M. Rajarathinam.

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