HYDERABAD: Shaik Mazr, 20, who has taken over his father’s traditional occupation, was forced to sell his favourite horse last month just to be able to feed other horses. Despite that, unfortunately one of his horses recently died due lack of feed, he claims. Ever since the lockdown, the prospect of starvation looms for carriage horses as their owners have lost their livelihood due to restrictions on gatherings at weddings.
Shaik, who has to run a family of six, told TNIE, “Last month when we realised that there is no hope of weddings starting anytime soon and we decided to sell one of our 10 horses. We had bought the horse for
Rs 1 lakh, but had to sell it for Rs 30,000. The selling price has reduced drastically in the market due to the pandemic, but we had no other option as there was no money coming at all to feed the horses. We need Rs 600 every day to feed a single horse. We have not earned a single rupee in the last four months.”
“Just a few days ago, one of my mares, Munni, got ill. We could not afford medicines due to lack of money. On Saturday, she died. Our other animals are also not keeping well due to the unavailability of food, and we are helpless now,” he lamented.
Sohil Khan, who along with his brothers also runs horse carriage business from Jumeirat Bazaris facing a similar crisis. “We have tried to reach out to many people but no help came our way. The government should arrange for feed for our horses or else they will all die soon.”
Sohil, who has studied till Class X, said that he has been trying to find a new job. “Nobody is offering me a job, as the market is not good for new jobs. I do not know how to survive and get food for my family.”