In Visakhapatnam, down the overcrowded Dondaparthy road, a little lane that runs at right angles transports you to another world altogether. The Kummari veedhi or the potter’s lane is a market that is narrow yet appealing. This is where the earthen flower pots, diyas and other earthenware for Diwali are created. While the market is not as busy as it once used to be, the families that are into this line of work continue to take it up even after decades.
How it started
Pottery was an extremely important profession a hundred years ago, for that was when every household needed varied items made of clay. From vessels that held milk and curd to water carriers, that were popular during those days, today their markets have undergone a dramatic shift. Demand is now higher for flower pots, decorative items, and Diwali diyas. While the market gets busy during wedding season, Deepavali is one of the biggest occasions they cater to. In fact, preparation for the festival begins months in advance as many buyers come to these lanes for making their purchases.
As pottery is not enough to sustain these families, many also take up weaving bamboo baskets, that helps them generate additional income. With hands already deft at the art of pottery, most of the baskets are flawless and beautiful, not to mention eco-friendly.
Diyas and eco-friendly baskets woven out of bamboo are best bought here, as the rates are much lesser.
Opt for earthen-ware that isn’t painted. That way you get completely eco-friendly products and might even others in Visakhapatnam to do the same.