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Yuletide spirit warms up city amidst wintry chill

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Dec 21 - Along with the rest of the world, the Yuletide spirit has gripped Guwahati with the cathedrals now being decked up to celebrate the festival in a grand way. Kiosks selling special Christmas related items have come up in large numbers all over the city in the run-up to the fest.

As the festival is equally popular among the Christians and the non-Christians of the city, the markets are now filled with Christmas goodies, attracting the visitors.

As lighting and decorations hold a special significance during the occasion, a number of makeshift shops have come up here, selling streamers, stars, buntings and different sizes of Xmas trees.

�A few years back, there were a few shops selling Christmas goodies at Silpukhuri, Pan Bazar and Ganeshguri. But now, several such shops have come up in the markets and on roadsides as well. It adds to the city's beauty and highlights the cosmopolitan outlook of Guwahati. It also shows the zeal among people to celebrate all festivals with gusto,� said Rajib Deka, a local entrepreneur who has a wholesale shop of decorative items at Fancy Bazar, adding, �the business increases manifolds during this time.� Like every other commodity, inflation has left a significant impact on the Christmas market as well with decorative items getting costlier than ever.

�From sparkle lights to Christmas trees, everything is getting costlier now. A streamer that was merely Rs 10 per piece is now selling at Rs 25 per piece. Big Christmas trees are no more budget-friendly for the commoners, even the Santa dolls are being sold at a much higher rate. No doubt, we have a large collection of beautiful decorative items to choose from,� said Pretty Borthakur, a school student, who was shopping for Christmas items in the Goswami service area.

On the other hand, the beautifully decorated malls are also attracting the people with their Christmas special offers.

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