Srinagar (Jammu and Kashmir) [India], July 17 (ANI): Days ahead of Bakr-Eid, sheep and goat sales have gone down in Jammu and Kashmir's Srinagar due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Eid al-Adha or Bakr-Eid, also known as "Sacrifice Feast" is marked by sacrificing an animal, usually a sheep or a goat to prove their devotion and love for Allah. After the sacrifice, devotees distribute the offering to family, friends, neighbours, and especially to the poor and the needy.
This year, sheep and goat sales have been severely impacted as there are hardly any customers at the market set up Srinagar's Eid Gah area.
Locals told ANI that due to the COVID-induced lockdown in the state, which lasted months, people's incomes had been affected.
Mohd Ashraf, a dealer at the market in Eid Gah area said that he was likely to incur losses this year.
"There are barely any buyers. Because of the lockdown, I believe people don't have money and thus they are not coming. We have spent several months raising and taking care of these animals. I will suffer losses now," he said.
Nasir Hussain, a customer claimed that the rates have spiked due to the pandemic.
"Due to the pandemic, the rates have increased. I came here to buy a goat. The customers are facing a problem with high rates. People have barely earned money during the lockdown," he said.
Another customer, Ashif Mir echoed a similar opinion. He said, "The rates have certainly increased. COVID-19 has severely impacted people's finances and disrupted people's lives. However, from a religious perspective, we shall buy. That's why I came here to take stock of the market rates."
Mir further said that before the pandemic, the market used to witness huge crowds. "Many people flocked to the markets before Eid," he said.
Sheeraz Ahamd, a customer, said, "There used to be a rush in this market. Due to COVID-19, business is not doing well here. We are facing a lot of problems," he said.
Eid-ul-Azha (Bakr-Eid) may be observed on July 20 or July 21, depending on the sighting of the moon. (ANI)