Summer delights like mango juice and watermelon have already started selling in Ranchi. Scarves, handkerchiefs and other summer gear like hand skins have also found a place in many roadside shops. Pictures by Hardeep Singh
Is summer here? Going by the weather, it hasn’t. Going by the wares at the market, it has. As the sun continues to dazzle one day and mellow down the next and people ponder on whether to pack away their quilts & sweaters, Chhandosree checks out the pre-swelter scene
Officially, summer is still days away and the frequent rainfall, accompanied by thundershowers, is normal around this time of the year, which is spring.
“The Indian Meteorological Department categorises Indian weather into four categories — pre-monsoon, monsoon, post-monsoon and winter. We are in the pre-monsoon phase distinguished by rain and thundershowers. This kind of weather will persist till the end of this month and the temperature will start increasing from April. Till then, Ranchi will experience pleasant weather though other regions like Bengal and Bihar may get hotter,” said B.K. Mandal, director of Ranchi Meteorological Centre.
The mercury is hovering between 25°C and 26°C (maximum) and around 15°C (minimum) in the capital over the past few days
The rise in temperatures in the first week of February had raised the hopes for an early summer among fruit sellers, many of whom stocked on Mango and watermelons. However, the demand is yet to pick up for the king of fruit.
“I had ordered mangoes from the wholesale market in Harmu. But as very few people are buying aam raas (mango juice), I am trying to preserve the mangoes I bought. Initially, I had priced a glass of aam raas at Rs 50, but now the rate is fluctuating,” Rajnath Kumar, a fruit juice seller, near Marwari College (boys)
Watermelons, in comparison, are selling well.
“The prices are varying. Those who don’t like to bargain are buying the fruit for Rs 25-30 a kg while some are getting it for Rs 15-Rs 20,” said Md Shadab, a vendor doing brisk business at Daily Market
Smart men and women have already started buying the must-have summer wears and accessories that will help them beat the heat. Reason: prices are far cheaper now. Summer gloves, hand skins, caps, scarves, masks and other items needed to shield you from the sun have flooded the capital markets.
“I am getting good response and have placed orders for many more articles,” said George Purty, a shop owner near Satya Bharti on Purulia Road, while selling a pair of gloves for Rs 60 to a college girl.
“Very soon, the same gloves will cost Rs 100. Similarly, the hand skins, which are now priced at Rs 60 a pair, will be available for Rs 100 in a few days. That’s the time we will make maximum business,” he added.