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Sheep flood markets for Bakrid festival

Sheep flood markets for Bakrid festival
Highlights

With just a couple of days remaining for Bakrid (Eid-ul-Azha), sheep from across the State and even a variety of breeds from northern States like UP...

Malakpet: With just a couple of days remaining for Bakrid (Eid-ul-Azha), sheep from across the State and even a variety of breeds from northern States like UP and Madhya Pradesh, besides neighbouring States, are flooding the city. There appears to be less price compared to the last year on account of better weather conditions and good production.

According to traders, the prices were higher last year due to transportation problems caused by heavy rains. For different sizes and breeds, the prices vary. Roadside temporary markets have sprung up in view of the festival of sacrifice. Areas including Malakpet, Chandrayanagutta, Chanchalguda, Bahadurpura, Nagar, Mehdipatnam, Tolichowki and Golconda and many other areas in city can be seen teeming with sheep both from farms and countryside.

"A pair of sheep ranges from Rs 14,000 to Rs 70,000 depending on the breed, whereas last year a sheep was sold at an initial price of Rs 16,000," said a local trader, Mohammed Zaheer, who has been engaged in this business for two decades. The traders hope to do good business as there is ample supply of sheep compared to the previous year. "It appears that the stock in the market is good when compared to under supply of the animals in 2018. We hope to make some profits this time," Zaheer added.

Mukarram Qureshi, another trader near Chanchalguda, who sells big sized sheep, said that the price of a pair of local breed (Telangana potla), ranges from Rs 40,000 to Rs 55,000. This breed weighs more than 40 kg compared to others, and prices are expected to go up.

Most of these sheep in city were procured from local markets like Jalpally and Jiyaguda farms and from nearby districts like Bhongir, Nalgonda, Mahbubnagar, Gadwal, Sangareddy, Zaheerabad, Vikarabad, Tandur, Kurnool and Anantapur and also from other states like Karnataka, Maharashtra, AP, MP and UP," said Akhlaq Ansari, an old timer.

"The sheep are of different types like Telangana Potla, Dumba, Kadga, Nasi, Khassi, Menda, Jamunapuri (with long ears) and many other varieties. The Khassi is the costliest breed which starts from Rs 50,000 a pair and depending on the size may touch up to Rs 1 lakh. This breed is generally bred as pet in most of the households in countryside in northern India," he added.

Some observers feel that there is no major impact of the State government's sheep distribution programme, where it has already spent close to Rs 4,000 crore funded by National Co-operative Development Corporation (NCDC). The Phase 1 of the much-touted programme saw distribution of 70 lakh sheep (3,60,000 units), as per the figures of TS Sheep and Goat Development Co-operative Federation.

But due to inefficient handling of the entire programme, scores of officials at different levels were also suspended during the last two years. "If it were a successful scheme, the traders should have brought down the prices of meat in the market. Even today, the price of meat remains about Rs 600 per kg," said an observer.

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