Eid shopping reaches fever pitch in Kashmir


Srinagar: Eid shopping Saturday reached fever pitch in Srinagar and other major towns of Jammu and Kashmir with people thronging markets in large numbers.

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In Srinagar, police had a tough time trying to streamline traffic although heavy vehicles were disallowed on most uptown and old city roads.

Meat, bakery, fruits, vegetables and hosiery items as usual remained high on the shopping list of the locals.

Authorities formed special squads to regulate prices and some shopkeepers were fined for overcharging. However, it seemed shopkeepers were charging buyers at will.

Some shoppers complained about traders charging exorbitant prices for goods.

“I bought a pullover for Rs.1,200, while a neighbour paid Rs.300 extra for the same at another shop,” said Zahoor Ahmad, a local resident.

After the month-long fasting during the month of Ramadan, people do not mind loosening their purse strings for Eid-ul-Fitr.

“My son wants a new bike while my daughter has asked for a scooty. Eid is a special occasion when we don’t mind spending a little more,” said Abdul Hamid, a Srinagar resident.

Children shopping for firecrackers was a common sight in Srinagar markets.

Bakers in most areas of the old city have extended their shops right up to the middle of the streets to accommodate their merchandise. The local police and municipal authorities preferred to ignore the violation in the festive season.

“It is usual for most shopkeepers, especially the bakers, to extend their stalls on to the streets during Eid,” a municipal corporation official said.

Shopping malls in the city also announced special discounts on the festival, but buyers did not appear to be impressed.

“This is like the typical 10th standard arithmetical problem – a trader first marks his goods 30 percent above the cost price and then announces a discount of 10 percent,” said Abdul Majid, a resident of Ganderbal district, in a dismissive tone.