During the lockdown period, many businesses have faced intensive losses at a stretch. The beautiful view of a groom riding on a horse into the premises of the marriage hall, followed by music and dance, is something that happens not just in movies, but at weddings in the city too. However, with limitations imposed on marriage parades in view of the Covid-19 pandemic, traders of horses and camels in the city are in a financial disorder with no business at all in the last six months.
“For the last six months, there has been no business due to the pandemic and the restrictions enforced during the lockdown. Several animal caretakers have quit their jobs as we were unable to pay them,” says Sohail Khan, an animal supplier at Jummerat Bazaar. On an average, Rs 300 is spent each day towards fodder for the horse.
“That means Rs 9,000 a month for a horse. Most horse suppliers here have between 10 and 25 horses with them. You can imagine the amount they need to spend on arranging just fodder,” says Mohd Salman, another horse supplier at Jummerat Bazaar. Unable to arrange money, a few horse owners have started selling off their horses at throwaway prices. “I had to sell eight horses for Rs 40,000 each a few days ago. I had purchased them from Malegaon for Rs 1.2 lakh each a year ago. I had no other option but to sell them,” says Mohammed Aamir Khan, a horse supplier from Falaknuma.