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Of mouth-fresheners and elections...

November 21, 2008 13:11 IST

Mouth-fresheners in wrappers printed with party symbols and fashion accessories like bands and bangles are now being used by various political parties to woo young voters in the poll-bound national capital.

This is besides a raging demand for masks of political leaders.

"Over the years, trends in advertisement accessories have changed. From traditional flags and banners, it has changed to fresheners and fashion materials," Abdul Gaffar Ansari, a trader at Sadar Bazaar who has been supplying poll publicity material for the past 20 years, says.

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The fashion accessories that are in demand from various parties, particularly the Bahujan Samaj Party, include clips, bands, lockets and bangles with the party symbols, he says.

It was the traders who conceived the idea of using mouth-fresheners with wrappers with the party symbols on them.

"Usually, we get orders for the ad materials, but this time around, we presented new options which has been taken hand in hand by different parties," says Madanlal, another trader.

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The mask mania has also gripped the capital's parties where the demand from Congress is for party's young face Rahul Gandhi [Images]. For the BJP, party patriarch Atal Bihari Vajpayee still has the 'poster boy' image.

"Most of the Congress candidates are demanding masks with Rahul face on it, while BJP candidates ask for Vajpayee's face on banners, posters and masks," says Madanlal, another shopkeeper.

"Despite having a good stock, we had to place special orders to the manufacturers for Rahul and Vajpayee's face on the campaign material," he says.

The traders said that the masks this time are locally made and cheaper unlike those used in Gujarat, which were imported from China.

Other new advertising material that are high on demand include caps, badges, mufflers and T-shirts with party symbols and flags printed on the materials.

"These ad items are handy, so it does not become a problem in handing it over to the voters," another shopkeeper selling the ad material says, adding that these also do not violate any election guidelines.

"We too need to be innovative as it pays dividends," the shopkeeper says, adding that the new material will be available for the coming Lok Sabha election also.

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