Plastindia exhibition postponed from 2021 to 2022

Plastindia – 17 to 21 February 2022 at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi

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Plastindia exhibition 2018
SP Ultraflex Roboslit Plus running at 1000 meters a minute in Hall 7 at Plastindia 2018. Photo PSA

The 11th edition of the PlastIndia exhibition, initially scheduled to be held in New Delhi’s Pragati Maidan from 4 to 9 February 2021, has been postponed by a year and is to be held from 17 to 21 February 2022 at Pragati Maidan. A letter dated 22 August 2020 has been circulated to stakeholders by email by the Plastindia Foundation president Jigish Doshi and its National Executive Council chairman Ajay Shah.

Held at Pragati Maidan for many of its editions, the Plastindia exhibition was moved to Gandhinagar in Gujarat for the last few shows. It was to move back to New Delhi in the reconstructed Pragati Maidan in February 2021. The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and the consequent health and safety reasons have been cited for the one-year postponement.

Expressing regret at the inconvenience caused by the postponement to the exhibitors and other stakeholders, the letter refers interested exhibitors to the www.plastindia.org website for participation and standard operating procedures from 1 October 2020.

Our view on the Plastindia exhibition postponement

The Plastindia exhibition had, first of all, outgrown the old Pragati Maidan. After moving to Gandhinagar, it soon outgrew that destination as well, mostly since accommodation in that new city next to Ahmedabad and in Ahmedabad was not sufficient nor suitable for an international exhibition of this scale. 

In September 2020, it is impossible to see how the Covid-19 pandemic will play out in relation to printing and packaging industry exhibitions anywhere in the world, considering the problems of air travel, visas, quarantines, and constraints on large gatherings. On top of this, the Covid-19 pandemic is raging in India with over 80,000 new acknowledged cases each day. 

The revamped and reconstructed Pragati Maidan promises a great deal, and notwithstanding the current high rate of Covid-19 infections in India, it should be ready for a large exhibition event by 2022. However, we still think that large exhibitions need to think beyond their current style of functioning and continuous expansion of space for adding exhibitors and visitors. There is the added issue of managing visitors in crowded halls full of running machines without proper safeguards and the use of flammable materials without the necessary safety and fire precautions.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

It is the right time to support our high-impact reporting and authoritative and technical information with some of the best correspondents in the industry. Readers can power Packaging South Asia’s balanced industry journalism and help sustain us by subscribing.

– Naresh Khanna

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Editor of Indian Printer and Publisher since 1979 and Packaging South Asia since 2007. Trained as an offset printer and IBM 360 computer programmer. Active in the movement to implement Indian scripts for computer-aided typesetting. Worked as a consultant and trainer to the Indian print and newspaper industry. Visiting faculty of IDC at IIT Powai in the 1990s. Also founder of IPP Services, Training and Research and has worked as its principal industry researcher since 1999. Author of book: Miracle of Indian Democracy.

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