With online shopping gnawing at its feet, shopping in the markets in Mizoram has come down drastically even when Christmas is fast approaching.
More and more people in the Christian-dominated state are purchasing commodities on the Internet.
According to rough estimates, nearly 18,000 parcels were received here through online business during October which would be worth around Rs 87.47 lakh.
Popular online merchants included Zovi.com which has local boy Joel Sailo as the design manager signifying that Mizos are not only buyers but also profit makers in the ever-growing online business.
Courier services in the state, especially here in the capital city, are tackling more and more consignments as Christmas approaches.
Myntra Service Point at Zarkawt locality here now has doubled itself as a courier service receiving 1,289 items during October of which 93 per cent were cash on delivery and 10 per cent to be sent outside Aizawl.
Malsawmdawngliana, vice president of Mizoram Courier and Logistics Association, says, “We are like dak-runners and online shopping is only a part of our business.”
Mushrooming online business has hurt many local business establishments prompting the Mizoram Merchants Association (MIMA) to meet state Finance Minister Lalsawta, who also holds taxation portfolio, and urging him to check the fast-growing e-business.
Lalsawta, while making it clear that the government did not have any intention to stop online shopping, says it was trying to find ways to levy tax on commodities entering the state through courier and postal services.
He also says that some businessmen in Aizawl were forced to close their shops after online shopping hampered their business by offering commodities at much cheaper rates.
“We regard online shopping as the blessings brought to us by ever advancing technology in the 21st century, but we (government) will also try to get additional resources from the growing business,” he says.