Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service
Amritsar, August 30
With just two days left for Bakr-Eid celebrations, the goat market in the city has witnessed a good footfall of sellers and buyers this time, say traders. Though the Muslim population in the city is not very large, lakhs of sheeps and goats are brought here for sale and purchase as traders from Kashmir come here to buy the animals.
The sellers are mostly from Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Haryana. The Muslim community is in majority in Kashmir where lakhs of animals are taken to from Rajasthan and other neighbouring states. Rajasthani traders always find good deal in the Amritsar market.
Atta Mohammed, a trader from Bikaner, said, “I have been visiting Amritsar for the past 20 years. Last year, we didn’t get good price due to unrest in Kashmir. With the grace of Allah, normalcy has returned and the market is recovering”.
Meanwhile, a Kasmiri trader, Atif, claimed that the people had been facing financial crisis in Kashmir. They are not able to spend much on ‘kurbani’ (sacrifice). Sheep is affordable as compare to goat.
Ranjit Singh, a local broker, said, “The local Muslims are migrated labourers. They can’t afford goats for lakhs of rupees. It is a market of common man. The maximum price of animal is Rs 50,000.”
It is worth mentioning here that the ‘bakra’ (goat) mandi of the city is centuries old. Muslim traders left to Pakistan after the Partition of Punjab in 1947. But the mandi is still there and generates good revenue for traders. Traders feel that animals have been getting costly with the passage of time as nomad tribes are shifting their occupations.
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