Dubai: Meet the expert from India who has been selling the UAE flag for 46 years – News | Tech Rasta

The old souk in Deira becomes a sea of ​​red, white, green and black around this time of year in preparation for National Day celebrations.

Published: Wednesday 2 Nov 2022, 10:21 AM

In mid-October every year, the old souk in Deira changes its colors to black, red, white, and green – the colors of the UAE’s national flag. Any visitor or shopper who enters the market immediately feels the joy of UAE National Day, which is just around the corner.

Times of Khaleej visited the souk to feel the patriotism that the souk has been offering for decades. The sock is decorated with the UAE flag, as is every corner, even in the small alleys of the market. Visitors, mostly Emiratis, can be seen buying the UAE flag and products that feature it.

During our visit to the market, we met an elderly businessman who arrived in the UAE on November 3, 1976, five years after the United States was officially established. Since then, he has had only one profession – selling the UAE flag.

Abdul Majid Muallimi is a businessman who has worked in Dubai for the past 46 years. He has witnessed and celebrated almost every UAE National Day. “Before, until 1980, the ceremony was completely different. Dubai was a small town at the time, and the most happening place was a creek. In the absence of tall buildings and skyscrapers, the sky on the Deira side was lit up with fireworks. It’s not like what we see today,” recalled Mualimi.

An Indian traveler from Karnataka mentioned that people from the northern kingdoms will come to Dubai to participate in the festival on the crowded road along the canal. “It was one road on the creek, and the whole area from the market to the Al Maktoum Bridge was decorated with real zeal,” recalled Muallimi.

Another tradition was to paint cars in the colors of the flag. “We witnessed expensive cars being painted,” the businessman said, noting that the celebrations would start early. “We were able to feel the essence of the National Day during September itself.”

The teacher also remembered the locals who were giving delicious food that was prepared in their homes and distributed among the immigrant community. “Like today, the expatriate community also celebrated the National Day with full enthusiasm. Only a few nationalities were present in Dubai on those days,” said the 67-year-old expert.

Maullimi said that he has more than 200 types of products in his store, all with the colors of the UAE flag. These include flags, boxes, bags, hair clips, badges, hats, t-shirts, clothes, stationery, coffee mugs, jackets, ribbons, pens, balloon arches, gift boxes, play sticks, scarves, scarves, gift tags, face paint. , markers, umbrellas and bunting. “Before, we only had flags. Currently we sell more than 300 thousand flags per season. There are more than 70 stores in the sock dedicated to selling flags, and I believe their sales are also the same.”

The prices of each product vary, and buyers buy wholesale for the whole family or their neighborhoods, said Muallimi.

Flag sizes start from 14×21 cm which costs about Dh5 a dozen, to flags as big as 100×4 meters with a price tag of Dh1000 a piece. “Big flags are not bought much. However, flags with a size of 30×3 meters are needed at a price of Dh500,” said Muallimi.

People from every corner of the country visit the Mualimi store to celebrate their passion and devotion for the National Day. “I have customers from Abu Dhabi, Al Ain, Madha, Dhaid, Kalba, and almost every corner of the country. Emiratis visit supermarkets to get their national day needs, but it is customary to visit the old souk.”

What is most needed, according to the Teacher, is a new shawl, designed in different patterns, with quotation marks, images of rulers, and flag colors.

There are many wholesalers and designers of these new custom shawls. “These shawls are a favorite accessory of Emiratis these days,” said Syed Nasiq, sales and marketing manager at NFN General Trading LLC, the company that makes these accessories.

“These shawls are in great demand these days. It comes in universal sizes and suits any aesthetic,” said Nasiq. “This shawl definitely gives an interesting look to a kandoora or even an abaya.”


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