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'Business picks up when the Congress wins'

By Vicky Nanjappa
May 19, 2009 20:51 IST
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For Durga Prasad, a vendor outside the Indian National Congress office on Akbar Road, New Delhi, the victory of the party has brought him joy for an entirely different reason. A victory for the Congress means that he gets to make an extra buck by selling memorabilia of the party.

Durga Prasad says that he is staunch supporter of the Congress and with this victory he has managed to make some extra money. Party workers and other supporters of the party who come from various parts of the country make a compulsory stop over at his make shift shop to pick up flags, shawls, stickers, banners and badges.

Prasad says that the shawls bearing the symbol of the party sell the most and every Congress worker who comes to the Congress office picks up at least one before he enters into the compound which houses the office. This trade interestingly has not been started off by Durga Prasad. He points to a photograph of his father standing with Sonia Gandhi which hangs on the wall behind him. He says that the shop was started by his grandfather 25 years ago. "My grandfather was a supporter of the party and he thought of setting up shop here and selling Congress memorabilia. He thought that it would be nice to make a living as well as support the party which he loved so much. Although I did not have any inclination to become a vendor on Akbar Road at first, looking at my grand father's passion, I thought that I too should continue doing something that he loved so much," Prasad said. 

Prasad is however not a part timer and says that he sits outside the Congress office everyday. "The business is not always good. However picks up at the time of elections or any other party related event that takes place. There is always someone or the other who visits the Congress office and they make it a point to pick up something from my stall. During dry days, I manage to make around Rs 150 a day and during events such as this (Congress winning the elections), my turn over is easily around Rs 400 to Rs 500 a day.

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Vicky Nanjappa