Islamabad - “Buy things from here and don’t tell anyone that you are wearing second-hand clothes. With such stuff you can compete with your brand-oriented co-workers and friends,” said Muhammad Maroof, a university student who was looking for second-hand jeans in ‘landa section’ of Sunday Bazaar H-9.

“However, selection and knowledge about brands and latest fashion trends play a vital role while buying at second-hand shops,” he added.

Sunday Bazaar, popularly known as Itwaar Bazaar, remains open three days a week — Sunday, Friday and Tuesday.

The weekly bazaars are usually set up to cater to the needs of working class who normally don’t have time for household shopping and here they could get groceries and other stuffs at one place.

However, the section of bazaar selling second-hand items has gained much popularity which is always manned with people.

“Gone are the days when shopping at landa bazaar would be the ultimate choice of the poor; the quality stuff at landa bazaar is awaiting well-to-do members of the society,” said Khurram Mehmood, a vendor who sells second-hand imported shirts and jeans. According to the vender, still there are some stalls that sell second-hand items at affordable prices for lower-middle class. “But the quality of such stuff is usually very low,” he added.

“How much is this?” asked a woman who was in landa bazaar with her three children. The owner of the stall realised from her outlook her purchasing power and said, “This shirt is for the children of the rich; you can’t buy it.” The woman went ahead without uttering a single word.

Previously the landa bazaar was known for second-hand sweaters and other items of winter but according to the vendors, the trend is now changed and they sell dresses for all seasons.

At this section of the bazaar there are stalls of second-hand and imported dresses, bags, purses, bed and table spreads, toys, baby carts, electronic gadgets and DVDs etc.

A lady came to a stall and when she asked for a bag, the price was mind-blowing for her. “Rs 1800 is final price; it is original Gucci,” demanded the vendor.

Annoyed with the price she told the vendor that brand new bag was available at Rs 800 in the nearby stall. “Better to buy that one, don’t waste my time,” said the vendor.

Stall owners that deal in branded imported clothes and other items have parroted some English sentences and brand names like “price is final,” “no bargaining” etc to impress the customers. The poor people usually avoid such stalls, as they fail to have good deals.

According to sellers of second-hand shoes, demand of sport shoes is high in the bazaar. “Sportsmen like our second-hand shoes more than locally made brand new high-priced stuff. The base price of a pair of sport shoes in my stall is Rs 1500,” said a vendor Muhammad Khan.

Women also show interest in second-hand crockery in landa bazaar but majority of customers finds the prices almost unaffordable. “We bought these four cups for Rs 480; the quality is very high,” said Umair who was in the bazaar along with his mother.

The people with low purchasing power complain that due to the entry of well-off of the society into landa bazaar, the prices of second-hand stuffs have escalated. But the vendors don’t buy the argument and said that the rates of second-hand clothes, shoes and other stuff were high in the wholesale markets, so they charged their customers high.