RAWALPINDI - After giving a deserted look for three days, life is returning to normal in twin cities as people are returning from their hometown after celebrating Eid ul Azha with their near and dear ones.

A large number of people, residing in twin cities in connection with their jobs, go to their hometown every year to celebrate Eid with their families and relatives. They mainly belong to various cities of the country and are living in twin cities for their studies or jobs.

The government this time had announced four Eid holidays from Oct 15 to Oct 18 with two weekly holidays of Saturday and Sunday, while people started leaving for homes to celebrate Eid on last Saturday and Sunday. It took the total number of holidays to nine, as people also attached Monday (Oct 14) to make their stay longer at their native towns.

Faisal, a resident of Peoples Colony said, "It is good to see people coming back to Rawalpindi after celebrating Eid. Rawalpindi had become a ghost town during Eid holidays."

The main markets, food outlets and restaurants of the town remained almost closed during the three days of Eid, which made difficult for the bachelors and on-duty staff to manage food. "I cannot find any food outlet or shop opened near my office at Saddar as most of the owners of restaurants and food outlets also hail from other cities", Amjad, an employee said.

The public transport plying between the twin cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi was seen very limited and the people who visiting recreational spots were bound to pay double charges to the available transport.

After Eid holidays, life started returning to normal in the twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad as public service offices and a few business centres and food outlets opened on Saturday.

This year the government had announced four-day official holidays from October 15 to 18 so that people could enjoy the festival.

Majority of the private offices, which mostly open on Saturday, announced another day for the day, while employees of federal government offices except public service departments, including Capital Development Authority, Islamabad Electric Supply Company, have more time till Sunday to enjoy long holidays.

Some bank branches, which usually work on Saturday, opened with necessary staff.

Talking to APP, an employee of National Bank of Pakistan, Melody Branch, said a few staff members performed duty while majority was on leave and would come back on Monday.

"Saturday is a half day and the bank remained open till 12.30 pm," he added.

He said only a few customers visited the branch, which usually witnessed hustle bustle even on Saturdays.

Asad Khan, an employee of a media organization, said his office did not close even on the first day of Eid as electronic media worked 24/7 to disseminate information among the masses.

"However, attendance in our office was also thin today as majority of the staffers, who have gone to native towns to celebrate Eid, will rejoin duty on Monday", he said. The employees like him who performed duty during Eid days, would go on leave after Monday, he added.