LAHORE – The Eid shopping spree has reached its peak in the provincial capital despite high inflation and the last-minute shopping is expected to continue until Eid prayers.

People, especially women and children, have been flocking to City markets and shopping malls, including Anarkali Bazaar, Yateem Khana Market, Ichhra Bazaar, The Mall, Panorama Shopping Centre and Shah Alam Market.

People in good number have been buzzing around hawkers and makeshift shops, which have been set up on pavements of the major markets in the City. Women of all ages visit bazaars and shopping malls after Iftar to buy clothes and shoes, henna, bangles and jewellery. This year, the low-salaried employees and the middle class people have not arranged Iftar lavishly because of inflation.

Shopkeepers have been fleecing customers through installing placard inscribed with ‘On Sale’. The majority of customers have been making complaints about high prices, saying they had been compelled to visit hawkers and stalls. Shopkeepers have been complaining that most of the visitors leave their shop after inquiring about prices of the stuff.

In the city, local and international clothes, footwear, cosmetics, spices and many other commodities have made inroads into many shops and markets. The high prices of rice, onion, chilli, vegetables and other essential commodities this year have hit hard the common people and many people got into a fix about how to manage Eid shopping.

Colourful Eid stalls have been set up at various points, selling different kinds of cosmetics, earrings, shiny bangles, embroidered clothes, jewellery and bright dresses. For the traders, this is the best time to make money. They are very optimistic as the shoppers’ presence is increasing daily.

Customers have to bargain at most shops because shopkeepers demand different prices of the same item. Eid card sellers have also set up stalls outside shops. Since major shopping centres have become overcrowded with Eid shoppers, traffic has been made to go under restriction.

The demand for CDs, DVDs and audio cassettes of Naats, Qawalis, Quranic verses and Islamic ringtones has increased in the markets in the holy month of Ramazan. Owner of music outlets said that the demand for such CDs, DVDs and audio cassettes had increased during this month and the sale is expected to continue to till Eidul Azha.

They said that many people can be seen purchasing such DVDs, CDs and cassettes from different markets. The shopkeepers are also busy advertising their CDs by playing in the markets to attract customers.