COVID ‘locks’ and ‘seals’ Jasmine’s fate

 COVID ‘locks’ and ‘seals’ Jasmine’s fate
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Udupi, July 18: Lockdown and Seal down in the coastal districts seems to have again dragged down the Udupi Mallige market.
The Shankarpura Mallige also called Udupi Mallige is the GI tagged unique jasmine grown in and around Shankarpura village, about 15 km south of Udupi. This verity of Jasmine has cultural as well as religious importance. 
Dakshina Kannada district is under lockdown for one week from Thursday. Though Udupi district has not imposed lockdown, it has restricted the activities and sealed down its borders. These have shown their direct impact on the flower market.
The price of Jasmine which was ₹850 per Atti on Wednesday dipped to ₹220 on Thursday and further dipped to ₹190 on Saturday.Similar is the case with the local Jaaji flower. The price dropped from ₹ 460 on Wednesday to ₹ 90 on Thursday and ₹ 70 on Saturday. 
COVID has created turmoil in the Udupi Jasmine market. Though the flower has a good market always, the peak season for the flower is between March and June. The annual festivals at the temple and religious and family functions push the price of jasmine to a newer high every year. 
But this year lockdown was during these months and thus the flower growers faced the worst ever season. After the lockdown was eased, the price of the flower had started to increase gradually. But the lockdown and seal down seems to have again sealed the flower market.
Now when festivals like Nagarapanchami, Varamahalakshmi festivals are approaching the lockdown and seal down are threatening the market.

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