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Tuesday July 23, 2024

Public outcries lack of accessible cattle markets ahead of Eidul Azha

By Our Correspondent
June 07, 2024
A view of the temporary cattle market in connection with Eid ul Azha organized by Rawalpindi District Administration at Bhatta Chowk in Rawalpindi on June 6, 20254. — APP
A view of the temporary cattle market in connection with Eid ul Azha organized by Rawalpindi District Administration at Bhatta Chowk in Rawalpindi on June 6, 20254. — APP

Rawalpindi:Practically, the district administration has left the public in a lurch by not establishing a single cattle market for Eidul Azha in Rawalpindi. They are only doing paperwork to show performance before Punjab Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz Sharif.

According to Commissioner Aamir Khattak and Deputy Commissioner Hasan Waqar Cheema, the district administration has established a total of 11 cattle markets in Rawalpindi, which will be fully operational from today, June 7th (Friday).

People from all walks of life have told 'The News' that the district administration in Rawalpindi should receive credit for practical work rather than making empty claims. On the other hand, Punjab Chief Minister Maryam Nawaz Sharif has strictly directed to set up easily accessible cattle markets in all areas free of cost.

According to the officials, five of the 11 cattle markets have been established in Rawalpindi city, including Bhatta Chowk, Mouza Misriot, Gulistan Colony, Khayaban-i-Sir Syed, and Channi Sher Alam. Two markets will be established in Gujar Khan and Taxila, while one market each will be set up in Kallar Syedan and Kahuta.

Three cattle markets have been established in Cant areas at Bhatta Chowk, Mouza Misriot, and Gulistan Colony near National Ayub Park. These three cattle markets have been sold through tenders for a significant amount, which means these cattle markets were neither within Rawalpindi city limits nor free of cost. Now, two markets are proposed: one in Khayaban-e-Sir Syed and the other in Channi Sher Alam. Not a single goat or bull was present in the so-called cattle market in Khayaban-e-Sir Syed. The other six cattle markets were not in Rawalpindi Tehsil, as they were in other Tehsils in Tehsil Kalar Syedan, Tehsil Kahuta, and Tehsil Gujar Khan, which were not easily reachable.

Practically, there was a proper cattle market established at Bhatta Chowk under the control of Rawalpindi Cantonment Board (RCB), but a common man could not purchase animals due to skyrocketing prices. The RCB sold the Bhatta Mandi for Rs11-Crore, where private contractors and sellers were exploiting the public. Deputy Commissioner (DC), Rawalpindi, Dr Hasan Waqar Cheema, stated that in the wake of Congo fever cases in Attock, the Rawalpindi district administration had decided to establish cattle markets where preventive measures would be taken to protect people and animals from the virus. He said the Punjab government had also directed the adoption of all standard operating measures in this regard.

The residents of Rawalpindi have stated that the district administration should show practical performance to provide maximum relief to the public and should set up cattle markets near city areas, such as Adiala Road, Chakri Road, Rawat, Soan, or any other nearby place. Muhammad Riaz, a citizen, stated that there was only the option to visit the Bhatta Chowk cattle market, which was very expensive. A normal goat was selling at Rs70,000 to Rs100,000, while a normal bull was selling at Rs300,000 to Rs400,000. The sellers excused themselves by saying they had paid a large sum to Rawalpindi Cantonment Board (RCB), which is why they were selling animals at such high prices.

Shabbir Ahmed, another citizen, said that every country provides maximum relief on special occasions, but here the concerned managements are doing business on special occasions. He stated, "The public is facing skyrocketing prices due to the bad governance of the concerned managements."

“Nasir Mehmood, a citizen, strongly protested, "The district administration and cantonment board have failed to provide relief to the public on the special occasion of Eidul Azha.”