With Eid-ul-Azha approaching fast, illegal cattle markets are being set up here and there in Sylhet sadar upazila.
Only 21 markets are permitted in the whole district, but there are more cattle markets inside Sylhet city alone.
Excluding the permanent cattle markets at Kazirbazar in Sylhet city, there are only two permitted temporary cattle markets at Laldighir Par and Tilagarh. Two more markets are permitted by the District Administration near the city at Tukerbazar and Pirerbazar.
But this correspondent found at least 20 more markets either set up or being set up ahead of Eid and all these markets are backed by local political leaders of different parties.
Illegal cattle markets are already being set up at Shahi Eidgah, Tilagarh, Rikabibazar, Chowkidekhi, Akhalia, Ghasitula, Mendibagh, Uposohor, Teroratan, Dakshin Surma, Kadamtali, Bagbari, Malnichhara, and other areas.
Shahadat Hossain Lulon, manager of the city’s traditional and permanent cattle market at Kazirbazar, alleged, “For the last couple of years, we are getting fewer number of cattle as the people behind the illegal markets are forcing traders to sell there. This must be stopped so that buyers and traders are not cheated when buying sacrificial animal.”
Kazi Mahua Mamtaz, upazila nirbahi officer of Sylhet Sadar, said, “Only two markets are permitted in the upazila but as far as we are concerned, a lot of markets are sprouting up. We have already taken action to remove a market from Daldali section of Lakkatura Tea Garden and asked another market at Baluchar to clear the premises soon. We will not let anyone set up illegal markets anywhere”.
Bidhayak Roy Choudhury, chief executive officer of Sylhet City Corporation, said, “So far only two temporary markets and a permanent market are permitted in the city. We have requested the District Administration to take necessary action along with police to remove all illegal markets here.”
Zedan Al Musa, additional deputy commissioner (media) of Sylhet Metropolitan Police said, “We haven’t received the final list of permitted markets yet. Once we get the list, all illegal markets will be removed.”