‘Dulhe Raja’ costs Rs 1.10 lakh. “I spend Rs 125 per day on his expenses. I won’t sell him for anything less than that,” said Mohammad Irfan, who has brought up ‘Dulhe Raja’ the goat to be the envy of goat sellers whom have come to Delhi from different parts of Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan.
They gather here before the Muslim festival of Eid-ul-Azha or Bakra Eid, as it is commonly known.
Irfan said his goat has been on a diet of chickpeas, milk, almonds and Gular leaves ever since he was a kid.
“Every day he drinks one and a half litres of milk and consumes one and a half kilos of chana. He is bathed twice a week and then given an oil massage,” he said.
Cuddled on all sides by his brethren of all colours — white, black, brown and even spotted, resting under a faded white tent warmed by morning light, ‘Dulhe Raja’ is the most expensive goat in Old Delhi’s ‘Bakra Mandi’ (goat market).
But what exactly makes this goat the best amongst all goats in Bakra Mandi, and possibly in all of Delhi?
“Nayi umar aur meat zyada (He’s young with lots of meat on him),” said Irfan of his 15-month-old goat weighing 130 kg.
For many Muslims, Bakra Eid is not just about a religious sacrifice, but an opportunity to “contribute to the lives of others,” said Professor Ghazanfar Zaidi, Dean of Faculty of Fine Arts at Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi.
“If, for instance, somebody is unable to pay the college fees, then we can help them out — this sort of sacrifice is what the spirit of Bakra Eid is about.”