Sales of warm clothes have soared manifold in the city as a cold wave accompanied by dense fog is sweeping across the country.
The lowest temperature was recorded at 8.4 degrees Celsius in Chuadanga on Friday while it was 7.9 degrees celsius in the same district on Thursday.Besides, the Met office on Friday recorded the lowest temperature at 13.4 degrees Celsius and the highest at 16.2 degrees Celsius in Dhaka.
The cold has hit hard people from all walks of life, especially the poor living in slums and open spaces. The fury of the biting cold has boosted sales of warm clothes. People are thronging markets and makeshift footpath shops in the capital to buy winter clothes.
Warm clothes, including old and new woollen sweaters, shawls, cardigans, jumpers, jackets, blankets, headgears, scarves, socks, blazers, and gloves are being displayed in malls, clothing outlets and makeshift shops across the city.
Most of the limited-income people were seen buying warm clothes at cheap prices from makeshift shops. Some buyers are looking for second-hand warm clothes at cheaper prices.
Crowds of people, both poor and well-off, were seen bargaining with retailers at Gulistan, Sadarghat, Farmgate, near Baitul Mukarram, Bangabazar, Rampura, Badda, Municipal Hawkers’ Market, Bangabandhu Stadium, Dhaka College, New Market and Gausia, Muktijoddha market at Mirpur section 1, Shah Ali market at Mirpur 10, and Purabi Super Market in Pallabi.
People are also buying room heaters, water heater, hotpots and other items to stay warm.Traders said the prices of locally made and Indian shawls range from Tk 300 to Tk 2500, woollen sweaters are selling at Tk 200 to 2500, and a cardigan costs Tk 150 to Tk 300 while a winter cap costs Tk 50 to Tk 60.
Chinese blazer is selling at Tk 1500 to Tk 5,000, leather jacket at Tk 1500 to 4000, long sleeve t-shirt at Tk 200 to 500 while a woollen blanket is selling at a price between Tk 400 and Tk 1500 or more depending on the quality.
A hawker at Gulistan said, “We mainly sell pullovers, which were rejected by the garment factories.”
M Ashraful Alam, owner of Ziad Fashion at Gulistan Trade Center, said he has been involved in blanket business for quite a long time. In addition to selling locally produced blankets, he brings blankets from different countries including China, Korea and Vietnam.
One Ferdousi Begum while buying warm clothes from a footpath in Rampura said, “We cannot afford expensive quality winter clothes in big shopping malls. The footpath is the only place where we can afford winter clothes.”
However, some consumers alleged that traders have hiked the prices of winter clothes due to high demand.
“Huge quantities of warm clothes are being sold compared to other clothes during every winter. That is why the retailers are making a little extra profit,” said Md Hasan, a shop owner in the city’s New Market.
A hawker at Badda area said a rise in transportation cost is one of the reasons for the increased prices of warm clothes. “Living cost is increasing day by day, the consumers must keep this in mind,” he said.