International exhibitors outshine locals at IITF
International exhibitors mainly from Pakistan, Thailand and South Africa are attracting more visitors than the state exhibitors at the ongoing India International Trade Fair.
Mostly women were seen hovering around Pakistan stalls which exhibited suits, sarees with Karachi and Resham Karari work along with silk dupattas. “These range anywhere between Rs 3,000-Rs 5,000 which is reasonable as the work is beautiful,” said Shashi Gupta, a local boutique owner.
Several women said the fabrics and clothing were expensive but the best part is that they can bargain.
Decorative items and dining tables made of rare stones also caught the eye of many visitors. One can buy products ranging from a small dice cheaply priced at Rs 50, which can be used as a paperweight, to an expensive dining table for nearly Rs 1.5 lakh.
Even sarees from Bangladesh have been a rage at the fair. Different varieties of sarees like Dhaki muslin, Dhaki jamdani and Mirpur jaryel kay made from jute are priced at Rs 1,800 and above.
Thai lights made of a special heat-resistant material in graphic designs were a star attraction at the Thailand section. Other items which attracted people include artificial flowers, wooden items, herbal oils and footwear made out of synthetic leather.
South African products made out of telephone wires, ceramics, bowls and plates and pottery were appreciated by visitors. “We are the focus country at this fair and hope to form business ties with Indian companies and small traders for our products,” said Alfred Fana Radese, one of the exhibitors.
Hong Kong’s coffee, chocolates, quilts and cushion covers were a big hit too. Bhutan’s food products and Vietnam’s crockery were sold like hot cakes.
On the flip side, state pavilions set up by Uttar Pradesh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, Odisha and others received a grim response.
North-eastern states fared better compared to other states. “State pavilions will attract more people once they are opened to the general public. Products of Himachal Pradesh, especially woollens and handicrafts, have gained popularity,” said R R Patyal, director of the pavilion.