LAHORE - Butchers, whether trained or untrained, have pulled their socks up to make roaring business one day ahead of Eid in the City. The butchers, who are deemed as rare commodities especially on the first day of Eidul Azha, have received innumerable orders despite the exorbitant charges for their services. In posh areas, services of professional butchers have been hired on advance payments. The service package includes slaughtering of animal, peeling of skin without any cut, and chopping the meat into pieces. They have set different rates for goat, cow and camel slaughtering. They are charging Rs 1,000-1,500 to slaughter a goat or sheep, Rs 3,000-5,000 for a bull or calf, and Rs 7,000-9,000 for a camel depending upon the locality. They are offering two options to the clients for slaughtering of animals - first is to slaughter the animal at the doorstep of the client on higher rates and the second is that rate will be reduced if the customer brings the sacrificial animal at their shops. A professional butcher Khaly Khan at Baghbanpura said that Eidul Azha provided an opportunity to the butchers to earn handsome amount by slaughtering as many animals as they could. The trend of staying at shops has proved beneficial for most of the butchers as it saves time, he added. After smelling the lucrative charges of slaughtering sacrificial animals, a large number of seasonal butchers have sprung into action. They have even set up booking stalls at various locations. With a view to trap the innocent people, they are offering 50 per cent less rates than being charged by professional butchers. More than 90 per cent non-professionals will be operating on this Eid, Ghulam Khan, a butcher associated with this profession for the last 17 years told The Nation. He said that many labourers, who were unable to find work due to Eid activities these days, had also adopted this profession for the time being to earn livelihood. He further said he himself had hired a group of eight persons from his native area for slaughtering maximum number of animals. Zahid Ahmed, another butcher, said, I am not seeing lucrative business this year as lot of companies have entered into this business. He said that these companies had been offering various services in their Eid package. One can only buy a sacrificial animal or can also benefit from their slaughtering and packing services. They will slaughter the animal, cut it according to your liking and get it packed, he said. If this new service has attracted the Lahorites it has also raised some eyebrows. There are people who think that this commercialisation will mar the true spirit of Qurbani. Zafar Ahmad, a retired government officer is one of them. According to him, A new tradition has started in which people get the meat cut, packed and then store it directly in their freezers with no distribution. In the next few years, he added, it would become a regular fashion and thus, the true spirit and tradition of Qurbani would fade.