JHAPA: As the main day of the Dashain festival is being celebrated tomorrow, local consumers in Jhapa continue to throng Indian towns near the Nepal-India border to purchase the Dashain essentials.

People mainly those residing near the border area prefer visiting the Indian towns across the border to buy goods as markets there are relatively cheaper than of domestic ones.

According to consumers, clothes, foodstuffs and other daily necessities are available at better price or comparatively lower price at the Indian towns,markets than in the local markets.

Markets in Indian towns like Panitanki, Naxalbari , Siliguri, Galgalia and Batasi across the border are crowded by Nepali customers with the beginning of the Dashain festival.

Puja Sharma of Bhadrapur-5 in the district shared that she visits the Galgalia market for shopping during the festivals as goods are available at relatively lower prices there and its saves her pocket to some extent.

The price of sugar is Rs 80-90 per kg in the domestic market while it is available at Rs 62-68 in the market across the border, she added.

Nearby Indian towns are always the first choices of Meena Basnet of Birtamod-6 to buy daily necessities. "Lentil that costs Rs 170 per kg here is sold at Rs 112 there," she added.

Consumers in the district have complained that suppliers in the domestic markets sold goods at exorbitant price.

"Market price is never fixed here and is determined upon seeing 'faces of customers', according to them. "Authorities concerned are apathetic to control market irregularities."

This is another reason that encourages or makes customers compelled to cross open border with the Southern neigbour even for regular shopping.

"There is neither the regular market monitoring by the bodies concerned nor traders feel the necessity of abiding by market ethics.

Unfair trading is in practice in the local markets, shopkeepers here never display a price list," complained one Laxmi Dhakal of Bhadrapur-7.

In contrary to the situation in markets across the border, business in domestic market here is gradually going down as they have failed to attract customers.

Nepali Congress district member Toya Gadtaula said cheaper markets are obviously the preference of costumers, but quality of goods should be their concern as well. They should be conscious about the standard of goods, underlining the need of taking measures to lure customers into domestic market.

"Guarantee of fair price and quality goods is a must, however."