Covid-19 Lockdown Hits Kashmir Business Ahead Of Eid 

KO Photo: Abid Bhat

Srinagar: The back-to-back lockdowns due to rising COVID-19 cases in Kashmir have had their effect on businesses in the valley as the hustle and bustle associated with Eid al-Adha was missing from markets with only two days left for the Muslim festival.

Shops in some areas of the city and elsewhere in the valley opened on Wednesday after remaining closed for nearly a week due to the fresh lockdown imposed by authorities in view of the rising number of coronavirus cases.

However, the usual rush that is witnessed days ahead of Eid al-Adha was missing as a large number of people preferred to stay at home in view of the pandemic.

"The footfall is not even five per cent of what it used to be. We were anticipating this and had prepared accordingly," Ashiq Hussain, who deals in bakery, said.

He said this was the third Eid in a row in Kashmir when the business activity has failed to pick up.

The sale of sacrificial animals was also sluggish. The sheep and goat sellers reduced the prices by nearly 20 per cent but even then the sales were meagre.

"We started with a rate of Rs 350 per kilogram of live sheep. As there was no response from people, we brought down the rates to 280 per kilogram. It has now started picking up, " Ghulamuddin Khatana, a goat seller, said.

Eid al-Adha will be celebrated on Saturday.

Sheep and goats worth crores are usually sacrificed by the Muslims in the valley to commemorate the devotion and faith of Prophet Ibrahim towards God.

The meat of the sacrificial animals is then distributed among relatives, friends and needy people. However, Islamic scholars have ruled that while the sacrifice should be made, the meat need not be distributed if it poses any risk.

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