Some steal chickens while others fight

Meat sellers in the riot-hit Trilokpuri returned to find their shops looted after the prohibitory orders were relaxed on Wednesday.

The chicken cages kept outside their shops had been forced open in one of the worst affected Trilokpuri’s Block 27. Shopkeepers said meat safely stored in refrigerators locked inside their shops is all that remains to sell.

“I came to know about the incident the day before. All these cages were locked,” chicken seller Idris said, claiming that none of the eight shops in his row was spared by hooligans. 

Idris said his customers belong to both Hindu and Muslim communities. Fanning the meat to keep the flies away, he said, “About 20-25 kg is left in the refrigerator. So far we have been able to sell only 5 kg.”

Shopkeepers claimed that they do good business on Bhaiya Dooj, the day communal violence engulfed the East Delhi area.With tensions now easing, three of the eight shops in the area were open for business during six hours relaxation in curfew.

Another shopkeeper, Mushro who flung open the shutters of his shop on Wednesday was lucky to have a cage full of chicken stored inside. He sold chicken for Rs 160 per kg, which is at par with the market rate, despite shortage of fresh meat in the market.

The supplies of food items, including chicken, had stopped after curfew was imposed on Saturday after rioters from the two communities clashed with the police.Meat sellers in the area claimed that they suffered a total loss of at least Rs 1 lakh.“We have not filed any police complaint. The decision will be taken only after consultation with everybody,” said Idris.  “My personal loss is around Rs 7,000-8,000. But some have suffered even heavier losses,” he added.

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