Sheep skin price in free fall this year

Just after Id-ul-Adha, people waiting near a masjid for sheep skin donations in Hyderabad.

Just after Id-ul-Adha, people waiting near a masjid for sheep skin donations in Hyderabad.  

Low demand from tanneries cited as reason

After Id-ul-Adha celebrations this year, the managements of madrassas across the city were pensive as sheep skin donations plummeted to perhaps an all-time low. That apart, what worries them even more is that the price that each sheep skin used to fetch has fallen by an estimated 95%. The reason for this is low demand from tanneries.

For the past several years, ahead of Id-ul-Adha, several large and small madrassas issued appeals to those making the ritual sacrifice to donate chirm qurbani (sheep skin) to their institutions. These would then be auctioned to highest bidders who were owners of tanneries. The funds generated from the auction would cover the administration cost of these madrassas.

Mohammed Khaleeq Sabir, State general secretary of the socio-religious organisation Jamiat-e-Ulama Hind, explained the conspicuous absence of bidders saying, “The sheep skins were picked up by several tanneries from Melvisharam in Tamil Nadu and Kanpur in Uttar Pradesh and other places. A large number of these have been closed as they did not meet the norms of pollution control board. The drastic price reduction and lack of demand is due to this.”

Sitting behind a skin collection counter at Masjid-e-Barkat Villa at Banjara Hills is Mohammed Javed. He too said that the donations are few and the prices are low. “Not only has skin collection fallen by over 65% this year, but the expected price per skin is only ₹ 8 to ₹ 15. Compare this with ₹ 250 to ₹ 300 per skin around four or five years ago and you will know the difference,” he said.

Mr. Javed said unlike in the previous years, this Id-ul-Adha, the masjid administration foresaw the grim situation and did not distribute pamphlets requesting the devout make sheep skin donation.

Similar is the case with Jamia Nizamia, an important Islamic seminary in south India, which once received thousands of skins of sacrificed animals.

According to its Chancellor Syed Akbar Nizamuddin Hussaini, concerted efforts to ensure sheep skin donations were not made this year on account of poor demand. Instead, the focus is on increasing rents of properties endowed to it so as to make the institution self-sufficient.

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Printable version | May 30, 2020 1:40:02 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/sheep-skin-price-in-free-fall-this-year/article24786641.ece

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