Rain dampens spirit of Deepavali in Andaman

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Port Blair, Oct 28 (UNI) Incessant rains, due to low pressure over the Bay of Bengal since last two days, have dampened the spirit of Deepavali in Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

Since October 26, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands have received nearly 70 mm rainfall, disrupting cracker sale and causing loss to businessmen and inconvenience to islanders.

Andaman and Nicobar Administration had earlier earmarked only one area in Port Blair for centralized cracker sale, but the plan backfired spoiling the mood of Deepavali in the islands.

''Everyone cannot go to one single place for purchase of crackers in this heavy rain. We are used to purchasing crackers from bazaar with other items for Deepavali. This Deepavali is troublesome for us,'' C Sreedevi, a resident of Port Blair told UNI today.

Some local businessmen alleged that the administration's decision to sell crackers in a separate area have caused huge loss to other businesses.

''Earlier people used to come for purchase of crackers, sweets and clothes from this market but now the entire market is deserted.

Moreover continuous rain has further dropped the sale,'' Rahul Agarwal, a businessman said.

According to an estimation, there was nearly 40 per cent drop in total cracker sale in these remote islands due to rain and administrative reasons. However, the Andaman Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) has totally blamed the rain god for the drop in cracker sale.

''The idea of selling crackers in one place was a success but only because of rain there is a drop in sale of crackers,'' Mr G Bhasker, the general secretary of ACCI said.

The local Met office forecast some more rains in the islands for another two days.

UNI SKR ADG AKJ CS1638

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