The Madurai flower market which once used to be bustling with people has been suffering losses after it was shifted to a new location as a measure to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
"I have a flower shop in the Mathuthavani flower market. After the lockdown was imposed, the market was shut. Thereafter, we filed a petition with the Madurai District chief to set up the flower market at Arapalayam bus stand. However, business isn't very good here," Nadayandi, one of the shopkeepers, told ANI.
"Since the market shifted, I'm being able to sell only a handful of my stock. Usually, we have good business during the commemorative month but this year's festival could not take place due to coronavirus outbreak and subsequent lockdown," he said while adding, "We request the Tamil Nadu government and Madurai District Collector to shift the market back to its original area."
Echoing similar sentiments, Bala Murugan, another shopkeeper, told ANI, "Flower sales have been severely affected due to lack of proper transport facilities. For example, orchids which till last year could be sold at Rs 500, is now being sold for just Rs 100."
"Till three months ago, the famous Madurai Jasmine flower was exported to foreign countries. However, now we are unable to even ship our stock to other states in the country," he added.
The lockdown was imposed to curb the spread of coronavirus infection by the Central government on March 24 and after several extensions, it is now slated to end on May 31. (ANI)