The incidents of donkeys’ theft and slaughtering are increasing with the rising sale of their meat to the local food points, and their hides that are exported to China, Thailand, Hong Kong and Taiwan where the same are in high demand, it is learnt.

A few days ago, the Pasrur Saddar police had caught red handed three butchers including Shehzad, Akmal and Khalid while making the meat of 21 slaughtered donkeys in the local fields in outskirts of Pasrur city.

In village Peero Chak-Daska, Motra police had also arrested accused Daniyal Maseeh and Sajjad Maseeh while making the meat of the dead donkeys at their house. The accused told the police that the meat of the donkeys was to be sold out at cheaper prices to the local hotels and marriage halls in Sialkot, Daska, Sambrial, Pasrur and surrounding areas.

In Muhallah Islampura Daska City, the police had recovered several hides of the slaughtered donkeys from the house of butcher Mohsin.

Daska based leading trader of hides Muhammad Afzal Mansha said slaughtering of donkeys was on the rise for hides that, he added, were sold to the traders in Gujranwala, Lahore and Karachi at Rs9,000 to Rs10, 000 per skin. Then the hides are exported to to China, Thailand, Hong Kong and Taiwan, he said.

The role of local police remained limited to only registering cases against the accused and after a few days they are bailed out by the local courts, he said.

In addition, donkeys are stolen and then slaughtered by the unknown persons as every day appears with the news of finding of slaughtered donkeys’ meat lying at different places by some unknown accused after getting their hides.

The situation has perturbed the people who earn a living by transporting bricks, sand, crush stones, soil and other material through donkeys. They said that if a donkey went missing, next day its hide-less meat, head and feet are found from nearby fields.

Pasrur based Allah Rakha, 65, said, “I do hard work of loading with the help of my donkeys during the days and I remain sleepless during the nights to look after my donkeys at my Havelli for saving them from going missing.” In Sambrial, Muhamamd Iqbal pointed out that he slept during the night by leaving his six donkeys at his Dera and next day he found his donkeys missing. Later, he found their hide-less bodies, meat, heads and feet in nearby fields, he said.

Human rights’ activist Shahid Mir Advocate Shahid termed the practice totally un-Islamic, illegal and inhuman practice. He said that the district administration and veterinary health department were responsibly for checking the practice on emergency grounds.

DPO Dr Shehzad Asif said that such incidents were being reported to police by the people. He said that mostly the accused get hides of donkeys after throwing their meat in the local areas.

He said that accused sold their hides in Gujranwala and Lahore at very high prices. He said that police had registered four separate cases against accused in Sialkot district in 2015 Under Section 379 PPC and Slaughter Act.