ISLAMABAD - For the blacksmiths in the adjoining city of Rawalpindi the period ahead of Eid-u-Azha is a time of lucrative earnings as sale of their hand-made knives and choppers has soared while there is also a rush for sharpening the old ones.
Purana Qila (old fort), a centuries old area with cluster of narrow lanes and old buildings, is the hub of the artisans.
A hustle and bustle is witnessed these days in the area with customers preparing their tools for performing ‘Qurbani’ - the religious obligation and Sunnah of the Holy Prophet Hazrat Ibrahim (AS) on the eve of Eid-ul-Azha.
“Finding a butcher on first two days of Eid is a very difficult task so people give preference to sacrifice animals themselves to follow the Sunnah and avoid inconvenience. People buy the required tools, while many get their old knives and choppers sharpened,” said blacksmith Muhammad Bashir. He spoke about the business to this agency as he sat in front of his small shop.
“These are the exceptional days for us as we do sufficient business, much more than the other times throughout the year,” Bashir said.
He said mostly people buy a set consists of one big knife to slaughter animal, one small to take off skin and a chopper to cut the meat into pieces, costing Rs. 700 to 1500 according to quality.
Other hot selling items on these shops are “angeethi” (hand made oven) and steel bars to make barbecue of the sacrificial meat.
Eid- ul- Azha also provides opportunity of good business to vendors who roam around on bicycles to sell a variety of knives and other related articles, which are displayed on a board. Their rates are less than the Purana Qila blacksmiths operating in regular shops.