Amid an impasse over finalizing mutton rates, butchers in Kashmir valley have been directed to open their shops within two days and that any shops found closed will be seized, reports said on Saturday.
President Butchers’ Union, Khazir Muhammad Regoo, said that they have been directed to open up their shops within two days.
He said after receiving the government directive, they have sent a legal notice to the government wherein they have mentioned the recent statement of a top official in which he stated that those who are not willing to sell mutton at the government fixed rates can’t be forced to open shops.
“We have categorically stated that we are not on strike to leave people to suffer. But, we want the government to fix reasonable rates so that we can resume our business,” Regoo said, adding that “let the government address our concerns, we will open up our shops tomorrow.”
However, he also said that those who are found selling the meat at their homes should be dealt with strictly. “We will not oppose the government action against those who are selling the meat at exorbitant rates at their homes,” he said, adding that they have been facing tremendous hardships as they have conducted their businesses from the last four successive months.
General Secretary of All Kashmir Wholesale Mutton Dealers Association (AKWMDA), Mehraj-ud-Din said that they are not on strike, adding that the rates finalized between the mutton wholesalers and the government are almost agreed from both sides.
However, he said, the issue is about the retailers and butchers. “We are waiting to see any positive development in this regard so that the business will be resumed again,” he said.
He also demanded strict action against the people involved in black-marketing, saying that anyone found selling meat in black should be dealt with strictly and the association will appreciate the action.
Meanwhile, repeated attempts to reach out to Director Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution didn’t fructify.