ISLAMABAD: With only a day left to February 14, which is marked as Valentine’s day across the globe including Pakistan, the prices of flowers especially red roses and red balloons have surged due to increased demand among people especially youngsters.
Red flowers are considered as an integral part of this celebration and everyone wants to have the best combination of roses for presenting a gift to their friends and loved ones.
Majority of the flower stalls in popular areas of federal capital are embellished with red roses, beautifully designed bouquets and variety of flowers combinations which has added colour and charm to the markets.
Due to the increased demand of flowers on the day, the sellers often create a fake shortage of flowers in order to mint more and more money from the enthusiastic buyers who, out of excitement, even compromise on double or triple prices on the day.
Taking advantage of the situation, a large number of vendors, especially children holding flowers, are also seen in the markets selling a single rose at Rs300 to Rs400.
Talking to APP, a retired school teacher, Azra Jehan expressed displeasure over the situation, saying that such occasions are against our cultural, social and religious norms but we are demolishing our basic values and adopting a western culture which should not be acceptable at all.
“While promoting these things through different social forums, what sort of values we are transferring to our future generations?” she questioned.
Pointing towards child vendors, she said they are the future of our country and are very much outspoken about the significance of the day and history which should not be encouraged.
Amin Khan, a flower seller at a Jinnah Super Market, said that shopkeepers are not concerned with whatever opinion people have about Valentine’s Day but as this is only a business day for them.
During routine days, the flower bouquets which are available from Rs300 to Rs3000 are now selling between Rs1000 to Rs5000 which is a real blessing for us.
Most of the buyers do not hesitate to pay high rates for buying such things and avoid arguments as it is not a basic necessity but luxury. “Those who can afford, they purchase it on any price,” he said.
He said he was a little afraid of unexpected rain which can impact flower sales on the day as people will reluctant coming out of their homes if heavy shower occurs.
Noman Ali, a young boy said that it is a general practice that people always find negativity in celebrations of such events while it is only a fun celebration and the youth just wants to enjoy the festivities.
He also complained about the increased prices of flowers and other related gift items before the day, saying that sellers use blackmailing tactics and unfairly increase prices of the items which are in demand these days.
Mostly, students are buyers of these items and they do not have enough money to spend but business minded people use different tactics to extract money from our pockets.