Hyderabad: With Bakri-Eid ahead, the prices of these sacrificial animals have been raised up to 25 percent this year due to various reasons, a very prominent one, ban on cattle for slaughter, implementation of GST, increase in transportation costs and also the high mortality rates.
Since the recent ban on cattle being imposed all over the nation, the sheep traders in the state say there is a shortage of sheep since the Governments program to provide sheep to specific communities.
The per kg price of Live sheep weighing around 20 kg is priced between Rs 300 and Rs 350 in general market.
Maulana Mohammed Rizwan Qureshi, Mecca Masjid Khatib said, “A sacrificial sheep, ram or goat has to be above the age of one year, a sacrificial cow, bull, ox or buffalo has to be above the age of two years, and a sacrificial camel has to be above the age of five years. The animal should be free from obvious defects.”
Around eight lakh sheep are sold every year in the state on the eve of Bakri-Eid.
Sheep from various states of AP, Odisha, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and some other north Indian states are brought into the state for the festival.
Mohammed Riyaz, Mahboobia Agro Farms chairman, Toopran, said, “Generally, a one-year-old sheep weighs around 20 kg. People buy sheep weighing up to 60 kg for sacrifice during Bakrid.”
Mr Riaz said sheep farmers have incurred huge losses due to high mortality of sheep caused due to viral diseases such as blue tongue and ecthyma.
Dr. M.S. Rahman, assistant director, Animal Husbandry Department said blue tongue and ecthyma were viral diseases in cattle.
He said, “Affected animals cannot eat or chew anything due to the formation of ulcers on their tongues. If they are not given treatment in time, they die,” adding, that these diseases are not transmitted to humans.
Sheep weighing around 20 kg were sold between Rs 8,000 to Rs 10,000 each last year and the prices this year could go up.
Since the strict implementation of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act and the immoral attacks by the cow vigilantes, cattle traders are finding it difficult to make ends meet and cope with huge losses.
The sacrificial animal, Bull or an ox gives a total 7 accepted sacrificial shares which are now priced between 3,200 and Rs 3,400 per share against Rs 2,500 and Rs 2,700 last year.
Mr. Hashim Qureshi, vice-president of the Jamiat-ul-Quresh of Secunderabad, said over the past two years, several cattle traders had been losing business due to “unnecessary harassment” during the transportation of animals.
“Our animals are being seized and shifted to private gaushalas. We have to pay Rs 250 per animal per day for the duration of their stay at the gaushalas. We cannot bear the losses and hence the prices have been hiked,” he said.