Amid the upcoming festive period, despite the call for a boycott of Chinese products, potters in Indore complained of traditional earthen lamps (diyas) losing sales to Chinese products.
"This year we're barely making the earthen lamps for Diwali. There's no demand for local lamps. People like Chinese lamps due to their design and shimmer. About 50 per cent of our sales have been adversely affected due to Chinese products," Ashok Prajapat, a potter told ANI.
Like other sectors, the pottery business has suffered a downturn over the last few months due to the COVID-19 pandemic and despite the festive season of Navratri and Dussehra, the business is yet to pick up.
"Since the lockdown, our business is completely shut and we are struggling to fend for our families. With low key festivals and closed temples, nobody is buying earthen lamps. Chinese products have harmful chemicals but customers still prefer those. The sale is hardly worth the effort and money put in the production of the lamps," Kishore Prajapat, another potter said.
With Diwali round the corner, the sale of Chinese products is surging in the market and local potters feel their products are being overshadowed in the market.
"The Chinese products have a wider range and attract customers more than our usual traditional lamps. This is a tough time for us in terms of business since we haven't been able to overcome the distress of the lockdown either," Mamta, another potter said.