Valley sees hectic buying ahead of Eid

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SRINAGAR: The markets here on Wednesday saw hectic activity ahead of Eid as buyers thronged to get specially bred sheep and goats, triggering endless traffic snarls.

Markets selling the sacrificial animals resembled a medieval traders’ caravan, while other major cities and towns in the Kashmir Valley too witnessed Eid fervour and panic buying.

Well-fed sheep and goats have been lined up for buyers at the main bazaar at the Eidgah grounds in Srinagar’s Old City where sellers from as far off as Rajouri and Poonch districts in Jammu region will sell the animals.

“Price seems to be nobody’s concern. It is the quality and the health of the animal that matters. A ram was sold two days back for Rs.50,000,” said Sajad Ahmad, 48, a buyer.

News reports say some unscrupulous sellers had injected baking soda and other chemicals into animals to increase their weight. But this has failed to deter the buyers who offer the animals as sacrifice on Eid on Friday.

Mutton and poultry shops, in addition to those selling bakery, were the next preferred destination of people in the city.

Pavement vendors selling ready-made garments, shoes and more have extended their stalls, almost completely blocking the pedestrian malls in uptown and Old City areas.

As the rush picked up, vendors encroached upon the main roads, adding to the traffic jams.

A few buyers complained of high prices.

“Spinach is selling for Rs.100 a kg while ‘Nadru’ (lotus stems) cost Rs.260 for a small bundle. This is looting,” moaned a buyer in Soura area of Srinagar.

Ready-made garment stores also witnessed feverish buying as parents accompanying children bought more than they could carry out of the stores.

Fire-cracker shops in Maharaja Bazaar did brisk business as children bought their stocks for the festival.

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