With Eid-ul-Fitr just around the corner, shopping has gained momentum in Rawalpindi markets with a large number of people, particularly women and children, flocking to main city markets, bazaars and malls. A huge influx of shoppers is being witnessed in all markets and bazaars of the town. People are seen rushing to buy dresses and household items. Temporary stalls selling readymade clothes, bangles, earrings and cosmetics had also been set up throughout the city since the start of the last Ashra of Ramazan. The markets and bazaars in the city remained abuzz with customers on Wednesday night as the buyers resorted to Eid shopping without being worried about the early closure of the shops. A festive environment in shopping was noticed at the busy markets including Saddar, Lalkurti, Commercial Market, Moti Bazaar, Tench Bhatta, Peoples Colony, Raja Bazaar and various other markets of the town. Several local and international brands are displaying their latest Eid editions of dresses, shoes, and other essential accessories to attract buyers and gain maximum profits. The shops and bazaars were decorated with colourful lights to attract customers. The shopping frenzy is expected to reach its peak on Thursday night. Families come out for shopping soon after iftar and are seen buying shoes, cosmetics, ready-made garments, eye-catching artificial jewellery, multi-coloured bangles, and other items for Eid. Women are busy in buying clothes, footwear, cosmetics, henna, bangles and other items. Big crowds of girls were seen on Wednesday night at bangles and henna stalls in various areas of the city. Taking advantage of the shopping rush, some shopkeepers have also started to fleece the shoppers with both hands. A customer said, “I have completed shopping for my kids and I have bought clothes and matching shoes.” Hawkers were also making brisk sales of clothes, footwear, cosmetics, and other goods as these products are generally purchased by low-income people ahead of Eid, said another citizen. Several Eid shoppers also complained of overpricing, especially of women’s and kids’ clothing. They said that only the people with deep pockets could afford to complete their shopping lists as it is difficult to buy clothes, footwear and other accessories during these inflationary times. “The prevailing price hike is limiting me to be content with buying clothes only for my children,” said Asifa, a visitor to Saddar Bazar. Mamona, a visitor to the Commercial Market, said buying bangles and henna was always one of the greatest Eid thrills. She complained that the shopkeepers were exploiting the Eid shopping frenzy and overcharging the customers. A shopkeeper at Moti Bazar said a great number of shoppers were thronging markets, adding that he made a lot of sales. Rawalpindi police have increased the security of the bazaars and markets by deploying additional personnel. Meanwhile, special arrangements have also been made by the City Traffic Police to ensure traffic flow.