Puttaparthi (AP), July 16 (ANI): Unveiling of spiritual leader Sathya Sai Baba's memorial in Puttaparthi has raised optimism in the commerce sector, including vendors of religious items, hoteliers and travel agents, as they expect numerous devotees to visit his hermitage.
Since the memorial of Baba was revealed on Friday, the entrepreneurs are optimistic about receiving a new lease to their falling business with numerous devotees expected to visit his hermitage, Prasanthi Nilayam in Puttaparthi village.
"After the unfortunate demise of Baba, we were already expecting that our business would fall and that happened. But still, we are hopeful of getting good business after the inauguration of Baba's Mahasamadhi (memorial), as every year, with the grace of Baba; we have been doing good business," said Bashir Ahmed, seller of religious items.
Some shopkeepers stated that they did not harbour much hopes as the increased frequency of visits by tourists to the mahasamadhi was still uncertain.
"It would be little difficult for us to get business as we used to get earlier. Sai Baba used to give interviews, used to preach to his followers and many people used to come here to meet and see him. But now, his Mahasamadhi (memorial) has been opened for his followers who will come to see it. But I don't think much people will visit here now," said Krishna, a shopkeeper.
The flower business had also faced the brunt of Baba's demise. However, the vendors expect increased business with the opening of the memorial for devotees to pay their respect.
"People have come to see the Mahasamadhi (memorial) and offer flowers on it, so we have been getting good business. Our flower business is presently flourishing," said Oblamma, a flower seller.
The 86-year old spiritual leader passed away on April 24 following cardio-respiratory failure. (ANI)