‘The heavy discounts are only making the deals sweeter as one can shop from the cool comfort of home, avoiding the hustle-bustle in markets during the festive season’
From electronics to jewelry, home decorations to apparel, people high on festive fervour are logging onto various e-commerce websites to shop as they decorate their houses or pamper themselves with ethnic wear, jewelry and a host of other items.
The heavy discounts are only making the deals sweeter as one can shop from the cool comfort of home, avoiding the hustle-bustle in markets during the festive season.
Sites like fashionandyou.com, snapdeal.com, jewelskart.com and many others say that sales have increased by as much 20 to 30 per cent and in some cases have even doubled since the beginning of Ganesh Chaturthi on September 21.
“There was lull during the 15-days shraad period as people refrain from buying new stuff during those days, but immediately after that, sales have surged,” Aasheesh Mediratta, director (sales) at Fashionandyou.com said.
He said great business is expected till Diwali (November 13) with Durga Puja, Dussehra, Eid-Ul-Azha and Dhanteras falling in between. And even after that, Christmas and New Year celebrations, as well as Lohri and Valentines’ Day (in early 2013) will ensure healthy sales.
Popular portal homeshop18.com is offering ‘Navratri combo offers’ with ethnic wear like sarees and kurtis combined with jewelry and priced between Rs 550 and Rs 4,000.
Similarly, jewelry combos are also on offer, priced between Rs 600 and Rs 3,000. A typical combo consisting of a necklace, pendant, bracelet and two pairs of earrings will set you back by Rs 1,000 after a discount of 60 per cent.
The hot-selling products on fashionandyou.com include Diwali decorations like fancy lamps and lights, gift items including exquisite diyas, candles and incense sticks and idols of goddess Laxmi and Ganesha with prices starting from Rs 200 and going up to Rs 2,000.
“By far the best selling products are ethnic apparel like lehengas, kurtis and churidars,” said Mediratta adding that festivals were the perfect occasion for women to dress to the nines.
Agreed, Peyush Bansal of jewelskart.com, an online jewelry store, who said that apart from the usual gold coins and god idols, jewelry like bracelets and necklaces were selling like hot cakes.
“Women love jewelry and what better way to celebrate the festivities than with a nice bracelet or necklace,” said Bansal.
Witnessing growth of around 40 per cent in sales, special offers by jewelskart.com include 25 per cent off on jewelry and a 10 per cent rebate on gold coins plus a five gram silver coin free.
Gift items start from Rs 699 and include an exquisite, 24 karat gold plated set of playing cards which can be bought for Rs 999.
The silver plated lord Ganesha and goddess Laxmi idols are priced between Rs 600 and Rs 1,500. The site also giftwraps the products for free.
Electronic items still remain a craze for consumers. Electronic devices like digital cameras, mobile phones and fancy pen drives are the most popular gift items, said Sandeep Komaravelly, vice-president (marketing), Snapdeal.com.
“We are seeing a lot of sale in our electronics categories. Sales have increased, though we are also anticipating a further hike of more than 50 per cent,” he added.
Special offers on Snapdeal include a buy-one-get-one-free offer on low end mobile phones, cash discounts on LCD television sets, digital cameras, home appliances and combo offers on laptops, flash drives.
Apart from the special offers, products and discounts which are pivotal reasons behind the surge in sales, the fact that people can shop from the comforts of their homes and get free delivery is a major attraction.
“It’s a fact that during the festive season, markets are chock-a-block with traffic and shoppers. So, online sites definitely have an advantage as it saves a lot of time, energy and fuel,” said 28-year-old Rakshita Kalra who has bought a laptop from Snapdeal.com for her younger brother as a Diwali gift. (IANS)
‘Indian cities should merge the old and new’
‘Steel and textile membrane are the physical components of Heinsdorff's work, while sculptural motifs are part of the guiding principles’
The landscape of Indian cities presents countless possibilities that make it rife for design-related experiments by combining the old and the new for sustainable development, says leading German installation artist and urban designer Markus Heinsdorff.
Analyzing the landscape of Indian cities, the artist said, “Many of the solutions lie in the architecture of urban India quite naturally.”
“For instance, in the green areas in Delhi the trees lined up on streets cast shadows. They help to keep the air clean and cool. The design solutions in Delhi have to be specific to the needs of the city,” Heinsdorff said.
“In a sense, Delhi has its own unique architectural face and this face needs to be preserved and not lost or replaced. Delhi has so much going for it already in its layouts and planning that there is no need to imbibe too much from other parts of the world. It is the uniqueness that works for the space in Delhi,” he said.
“Underground trains, subways, trams and electronic buses help reduce the volume of traffic to a great extent. In India, there is the great legacy of bicycles and cycle rickshaws which are not only energy-efficient, they do not add to the pollution, but save a lot of unwanted traffic. This is something that even Europeans are adopting now,” he said.
Citing an instance of an intelligent climate solution, the artist said when there was no electricity in India, natural cooling systems were used.
“All in all, merging the old and the new is possible by paying attention to the uniqueness of space and design methods of the city,” he said.
“It will be like a mirror to reflect on Indian architecture as it exists. I want to retain the traditional aspects of Indian design and mould them into sustainable architectural solutions,” Heinsdorff said.
Steel and textile membrane are the physical components of Heinsdorff's work, while sculptural motifs are part of the guiding principles. “Technology is not limited to machines. The intricacy and rigour that go into weaving fabric, as I see it in India, is also in that sense high technology and this is part of my architectural construct as well in India,” he said.
“In theory, Germany and India can be ideal partners for each other in urbanization and city-planning areas and find common solutions for future challenges. . Thus, there can be more of a discourse between the two cultures, than a mixture. It is a mutually beneficial platform for both the countries, learning from each other,” Heinsdorff said.
He said all new methods and practices draw from tradition. In keeping with the intelligent use of traditional space and resources, we must now look at intelligent housing that uses energy in an efficient way, combining old methods with current energy supplies.
“India is known as a country of rich textiles and lightweight materials and using them for modern architecture, which is also low-cost, is something I will be researching extensively in Indian and German universities,” he said.
“Energy and spaces will combine to minimise pollution levels,” Heinsdorff observed, summing up the cityscape of the future. (IANS)