ISLAMABAD - The capital city has started presenting a deserted look as countdown for Eid began on Friday.

Residents have started leaving for their native cities and villages on Friday to spend the Eid with their loved ones. Thin traffic was witnessed on roads and a few number of customers were seen in markets.

Eids in Islamabad are almost always boring for there is hardly any event on these occasions; there are no fun fairs, no cultural activities and no other attraction. However, those who celebrate Eids in Islamabad go to recreational spots during Eid holidays.

The federal capital is wearing a deserted look on Friday as people belonging to various parts of the country left for their hometowns to celebrate the religious festival of Eid with their near and dear ones.

Meanwhile, In a bid to get full advantage of the Eid holidays, thousands of people thronged all the bus terminals to leave for their hometowns to celebrate Eid-ul-Fiter with their families and loved ones.

Being the last working days before Eidul Fiter, travellers crowded all the stands, making it difficult for women and children to even get tickets. Transporters doubled the fares and even overloaded their buses to get full advantage of the situation.

As the people began leaving for their hometowns to celebrate Eid, transporters started fleecing them by increasing fares while the authorities paid no heed to the issue. During visits to various bus terminals, including Pirwadhai, Peshawar Morre, Faizabad and Karachi Company, APP observed that transporters were overcharging commuters.

The exchange of harsh words and scuffles between passengers and transporters were witnessed at almost every bus stand for overcharging. Wasiq khan arrived at Faizabad bus stand with his family to travel to his hometown in Azad Kashmir, but transporters were demanding Rs 300 per ticket instead of Rs 100. “How can I pay extra money for nine tickets?” he asked. Another passenger, Sulman Ali, said he wanted to go to Multan but transporters were demanding Rs 1,200 against the normal fare of Rs 800. Ali said transporters, in connivance with the authorities, were taking full advantage of the occasion of Eid by demanding and charging extra money.

Meanwhile, transporters are running air-conditioned coaches for long routes such as Lahore, Sialkot, Sargodha, Larkana, Sukkur and others and have increased fares by more than Rs 200 to Rs 300 per seat and further increase is expected in next two days.

When contacted, transporters said they had to run empty buses on their way back on the routes, so they were charging extra money to cover expenses.

Meanwhile, with only two days left in Eidul Fitr, thin attendance was observed at offices and educational institutions of federal capital on the last working day (Friday).

Majority of the residents living at federal capital for business, job or education purposes have started moving toward their hometowns to celebrate the festival of Eid-ul-Fitr with their relatives.

The capital becomes a deserted city on every eid as most of its residents, who belong to different parts of the country, rush to their hometown to have a good time with their loved ones.

“I left the capital on Thursday morning to celebrate Eid with my parents in Sindh and will return on August 22 (Wednesday) so I can join my studies from the next working day, Ammar , a student said. The most amazing thing during my stay is to share the happiness of eid with my family, relatives and old friends there, he said.

Most of the employees of private and public sector departments take weekly offs and holidays before eid and move to their hometowns little early as transport become unavailable at the last hours.

“I usually visit my hometown only on Eid due to tough office routine and this time I got more holidays to spend most of my time with my parents, Amir Shah, an employee said. “I left for my home town on early Friday taking holidays in continuation with Eid holidays and weekly offs and will come back before the first working day after eid”, he added.