There is an acute shortage of butchers in the city and families intending to offer sacrifices of goats on Id-ul-Zuha on Tuesday have been forced to rope them in from outside the city.
There is an acute shortage of butchers in the city and families intending to offer sacrifices of goats on Id-ul-Zuha on Tuesday have been forced to rope them in from outside the city. While there are around 2,500 butchers in the city to handle roughly 2.5 lakh goats for the ritualistic sacrifice, the shortage has been aggravated by the departure of 150 butchers to Dubai to ply their trade there for the auspicious day.
City butchers have taken advantage of the shortage by hiking the rates for slaughtering an animal by almost 25 to 30 per cent. According to the butcher community, the shortage has also arisen owing to the beef ban that has forced many butchers to take up alternative professions.
Advocate Aquel Ahmad Shaikh, secretary of Cadell Queen Building in Mahim, said every year the families in the society sacrifice nearly 35 to 45 animals and hence, require two butcher teams to complete the sacrifices. This year, however, the regular butchers refused to oblige as he had changed his profession. “We had to call in a butcher from Chalisgaon in Aurangabad. Last year, we had paid the butcher Rs 1,500 per animal, but this year we will be paying almost Rs 2,200-2,500 per animal,” said Mr Shaikh.
Ashraf Pistawala, secretary of another society in Jogeshwari, said on the eve of Id, people were still looking for butchers. “We have managed to get a team of five butchers and 20 helpers to sacrifice 35 animals in our society at Rs 2,500 per animal. Though it is on the higher side we have no option,” said Mr Pistawala.
Humayun Gholap, trustee of the Bakr Kasai Jamat Trust, said, “There are around 2,500-3,000 working butchers in Mumbai and on an average, each of them will be slaughtering, skinning and dressing 10-12 animals on the day of Id. However, the number of animals that will be sacrificed in the city is almost 1.8 lakh. To aggravate the issue, around 150 butchers from Mumbai went to Dubai last week as they were offered an all-expense paid trip and Rs 25,000 for eight days. So, people are calling in butchers from Nashik, Junnar, Manchar, Aurangabad, Malegaon, among others. In fact, some people are also calling in butchers from Bhopal and UP too,” said Mr Gholap.