A summer of discontent for these potter brothers

101

BY ARCHANA SHARMA
Jaipur, May 10 (IANS)
Two brothers, potters by profession, have been sleeping under open sky for 40 days in Jaipur during lockdown along with their unsold stock of beautifully made earthen pots, clay bottles and home decor, hoping they would earn some money once the lockdown is lifted.
Things have remained unfavourable for them as people are wary of buying these pots fearing infection. Also, their plans of making Ganesha and Durga idols for the forthcoming festive season seem to be falling flat for they lack money and resources.
“The summer seems to be passing off silently without giving us any return,” says Siyaram Prajapati, one of the two brothers, with a heavy voice. He says he and his brother have slept under open sky during lockdown and have not even gone to their village as they have to take care of their only asset — the clay items.
They belong to Phagi, a small village near Jaipur, about 52 km from the state capital headquarters. “Like every year, we brought the latest stock of earthen pots, vessels, clay bottles and home decor to Jaipur, made by our family of 20 members. We start our from October each year,” says Siyaram.
“We brought our work to Jaipur hoping to bring another set of stock lying in our house soon. We also planned to start making idols of gods and goddesses in June for Ganesh Chaturthi and Navratri. But, this time, the stock we brought to Jaipur on March 20 has been lying unsold. No one wants to buy them amid theh corona scare and with no money in hand, it seems, the festive season this time would prove dry for us”, he said.
“As the time passes, we are losing hope…to start making idols for Ganesh Chaturthi and Navratri… we have no money with us to buy the raw material”, he says.
“This is not only our story, but the story of many villagers. Last year, we sold around 80-100 pots each day since March. This year, we sold only 40 earthen pots till May 8,” says the younger brother, Mahesh.
“People have been kind enough to offer us food. With all our savings having gone into making this stock, we have not moved from this place since March 24 for fear of thieves, animals and other incidents”, he said.
“We eat and sleep alongside this stock of our earthen pots,” he says. “This year, Lord Ganesha may not be visiting each household fearing corona…since we can’t make the idols in the absence of money.

- Advertisement -