Ordering animals by app

TECHNOLOGY: The Careem app is proving popular

PAKISTAN’S cattle mar- kets were crammed for weeks as the country prepared for the sacrificial festival of Eid al- Adha last weekend, but in Islamabad and Karachi crowd weary residents ordered animals by app instead.

Muslims slaughter an animal – a goat, sheep, cow, bull or camel – on the annual festival in a ritual that stems from the story of the prophet Abra- ham, commanded by God to slaughter his beloved son Ismail.

The meat is then dis- tributed in equal parts to the poor, to relatives, and consumed by the family themselves.

The centuries-old festival is steeped in tradition, but this year some middle-class Pakistanis are turning to technology to skip the packed markets and

ordering their animals via the ride-sharing app Careem.

The app, which is growing in popularity in Pakistan, introduced a ‘Bakra (goat) on wheels’ initiative in the run-up to Eid, with specially-painted trucks ferrying the animals to customers.

The response was “substantial”, Careem marketing executive Abuzar Khan said.

But there was little chance of it threatening demand for animals at the country’s bustling cattle markets.

At one market set up temporarily in Islama- bad last week farmers from across the coun- try soaped and sham- pooed goats and camels, some shaving pat- terns into their coats to make them look more appealing in the eyes of judicious customers.