Jewellery stores in Ruwi wore a deserted look on Monday as sales took a beating due to apprehensions regarding the ongoing protests in different parts of the sultanate.
Most outlets did not put all their products on display. “We have not displayed all our items today because of the situation,” said Binesh, manager of Sea Pearls.
According to several jewellers Muscat Daily spoke to, each jewellery shop in Ruwi has a minimum 85kg of gold at any point of time. Large shops have a stockpile of more than 100kg.
A shop manager at a chain of jewellery shops said on condition of anonymity, “We have received instructions from the management not to display all our products. Besides, they have instructed us to store all the jewellery in the locker when the shop closes.
This is not the usual practice.” Manoj Karthekayan, executive secretary to the chairman, Atlas Jewellery, said, “Not many people are coming to buy jewellery today. Compared to normal days, sales are down by almost 90 per cent.” Unlike others, however, the store was displaying all its items.
Aju A R, shop in charge, Sky Jewellers, said they would be closing down earlier than usual on Monday due to the uncertainty. “Sales were down 98 per cent as compared to normal days.” The Joyalukkas outlet was closed, presumably for stock clearance. “The order to close came from the top management, and we just followed instructions. Of course we will open tomorrow,” said Mohammed Kutty, assistant manager of Joyalukkas, Ruwi. “We have not installed any new security equipment, nor have we taken any special steps as a precautionary measure.”
Employees said that all the jewellery outlets in Ruwi are insured.