There’s nothing quite like the Sunday Bazaar at BVK Iyengar Road. Refrigerators, utensils, garments, cassettes, earphones, wallets, cameras, magnifying glasses, fans, bags, shoes, toys gloves, belts and all kinds of other useful or simply fascinating objects can be found at throwaway prices as one walks down the busy stretch.
It’s advisable to go equipped with a hat and drinking water because the heat, sweat and sheer number of people can make it unbearable.
But once one gets into the groove of hunting for what they may or may not want, the fun only multiplies.
One can spend hours exploring the lanes and bylanes of the market, following the screams of shopkeepers offering discounts or stopping for a goli soda when the cart passes by.
Of course, it’s understandable to be confused, given that several shops sell the same thing.
But it’s important to look around and analyse the options before purchasing.
Suhail, who sells electronics, says that he checks and sells every item. “All my products are in working condition and I get my maal from a reliable source in Mumbai. There’s a very small profit margin but I come back only for my regulars,” he says.
There’s also scope for unique art devices like murku rollers, hand-designed stickers and India graph.
MD Zahir, who sits and makes India graph art pieces, is quite a hit with passersby. “I always come and sit in the same corner and do my work.
When people see the colours and patterns, they come individually or in groups to watch me.
Most of them take back at least one set for themselves or friends and family,” he shares.
Apart from electronics, another popular buy are shoes, with entire lanes being filled with only shoesellers! Asked about the business model, Anima, who runs a shoe stall, explains, “Most of the products are collected from different suppliers and sold at a cheaper rate but with a
reasonable profit margin.
We end up giving in to bargains because that’s how low the disposable income of our customers is.”
Families comprise a large chunk of the visitors there, though every now and then, one can spot a photographer or hipster roaming around. But for the masses, the affordability and convenience of a one-stop-shop makes it worth returning to.
“We come as a family every month to pick up supplies like clothes and electronics. They’re second-hand stuff but last long enough for the price one pays. The best part is that you can bargain even on the items that are sold at a fixed price,” shares Renu, a regular
Sanjeev, a 60-year-old at the bazaar, adds, “I make it a point to come here every now and then for the nostalgia. It’s a beautiful way to kill a Sunday, especially the visits to the bakeries along this road.”
Even without a shopping list in hand, it’s worth visiting Bangalore’s very own version of the chor bazaar, if only to experience the vibrant, colourful appeal of it all!
And don’t worry about how much is in your wallet. Carry even Rs 200 and it’ll be enough to come back home with a bagful of goodies!