PUNE: On the auspicious day of Akshaya Tritiya on Tuesday, Punekars thronged jewellery showrooms to buy gold, as is the custom on this day. The day is also considered a good time to buy two-wheelers or four-wheelers.
Jewellery shop managers noted that the flow of customers this year was better than the last year but the day witnessed slow business for the automobile sector. Increase in cost of vehicles and the upcoming Pune Metro service are being touted as the main reasons for this slump.
DESIGNER JEWELLERY TREND
According to city jewellers, many youngsters who visited jewellery shops preferred to get trendy designs available on the Internet made in gold and diamond or coloured stones indicating a shift from traditional designs.
Apart from gold and silver coins, jewellery for the daily-wear purpose was also in demand, said Saurabh Gadgil, Chairman and Managing Director and PNG Jewellers and Director, Indian Bullion Jewellers Association.
“Akshaya Tritiya is all about emotional buying and we are getting many new young customers who are buying jewelleries to use them and not to be kept in a locker,” added Gadgil. This time, families chose to buy ornaments for marriage functions while light-weighted designer jewellery was also in high demand.
“We received advanced bookings from the customers as they wanted their ornaments delivered today (on Akshaya Tritiya),” said Dinesh Sakhariya, owner of Dhanraj S Sakhariya jewellery shop on Laxmi Road.
Dinkar Ashtekar, an owner of MB Ashtekar Jeweller,s said, “This year, the sale was good due to the stable price of gold. Traditional marriage jewelleries and ‘mangalsutra’ were quite sought after.”
RITUAL OR NOT
Bappu Chakki, a resident of Hadapsar, said, “We buy gold every year on this day. But instead of a gold coin or Vedhani (gold ring without joints), we are buying a ring.”
However, for Mrugaya Bhuptani, a wellness consultant and a resident of Karve Nagar, buying gold every year is not ritual. She said, “I wanted to buy a ‘Mugdi’ since a long time, so I ventured out today.”
Chandan Gupta, Area Business Manager of the jewellery brand Tanishq, informed that many of their customers came with old gold jewellery to exchange it for new.
Chairman and Managing Director of Kalyan Jewellers TS Kalyanaraman said, “In Pune, while plain gold jewellery continues to be the most popular, we have noticed a considerable increase in studded and gemstone jewellery.”
Buying of vehicles was a slow affair on Akshaya Tritiya on Tuesday. As per the data received from the Regional Transport Office (RTO), Pune, 3,706 vehicles were registered in the last three days, compared to last year’s figure of 5,694.
“We have been observing slump in demand after Diwali (last year). It can be because of the increase in the cost of insurance as now a two-wheeler cost around Rs 80,000 - Rs 90,000 whereas earlier it was around Rs 60,000 – Rs 70,000,” said Bharat Thakkar, General Manager, Century TVS, noting the sale this time to be 200 two-wheelers, a hundred less than 2018.
Thakkar also reasoned that Puneites could be refraining from buying two-wheelers because of the Pune Metro Rail that will soon come up in the city.
Reshma Kadam, Manager of Pashankar Auto Pvt Ltd- a dealer in Honda two-wheelers, said, “The overall response has not been great this year and we have seen this in Diwali and Gudhi Padwa as well. The overall automobile market is facing a lull.”
VEHICLES REGISTERED AROUND AKSHAYA TRITIYA
April 16-21, 2018
Two-wheelers - 3714
Four-wheelers - 1203
Three-wheelers - 386
Heavy vehicles - 76
Others - 315
May 4-7, 2019
Two-wheelers - 2854
Four-wheelers - 603
Three -wheelers - 46
Heavy vehicles - 38
Others - 165
Source: RTO, Pune