Some sectors may have shone while the poll campaigning was on, but it failed to earn fortunes for the flex and printing industry of the city. The strict attitude of the Election Commission on expenditure of the candidates and parties and the stricter stand of the Indore Municipal Corporation on putting up hoardings and the cleanliness strictures to maintain Swachchta of the city also had put in the last nail on the sector’s coffin.
Business opportunities for sectors like hotel, travel industry had swelled. Traditionally during election time, flex and the printing industry get a boost and start working overtime to supply publicity material in the form of flex hoarding, papers posters, hand bills, paper caps and stickers.
But despite the Mother of all polls and also dubbed as the semi-final before the most important Lok Sabha elections, this election failed to create the cash bash for the owners and thereby the workers. There were printing presses where despite the hullabula of the polls, the machines remained almost “silent.”
There are about 200 flex and printing units in the city, which not only cater to the demand of the city, but also a few major towns of the Malwa Nimar region. The industry insiders lamented that this year was the worst in comparison to the previous elections. Even some opportunity of getting the business during Navratri had gone down. It had also washed away the Big Ticket event, Durgo Puja which started from October 10 and prior to that the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) of imposed on October 6. Due to the MCC, the Garba operators distanced themselves from leaders of both the parties. Therefore they did not order of flex printing.
On the assumption of getting a good business in the election time, the about 150 flex printers of the city made inventory of raw materials in advance at least worth Rs 1 lakh. Almost nothing could be used in the election time, the wait of which were for the last 4 years after the IMC elections held in 2015. The sources of the print industry said that they could do just 25% business in compare to last elections.
Vigil of ECI and IMC MUTED industry
- n Ticket distribution was made late and after that, there were 20 days left for campaigning.
- n Introduction of C-vigil app by ECI for this election to watch the practices of candidates and parties, forced both to
- refrain from outdoor publicity.
- n Threat of breaching the election expenditure limit, forced both to remain cautious.
- n IMC drive on hoarding-free city led to the shrink in business opportunity.
- n Whatever printing material and flex stuff were visible was availed by parties to candidates.
- n Strict norms against defacing the walls of buildings in the city was another dampener.