Srinagar: Halimi Miswak from Karachi, Pakistan, is in high demand in Kashmir this Ramazan. The use of Miswak, a twig used for cleaning teeth, is advocated in the Hadith and Muslim communities across the world use it during the month of Ramazan.
Halimi Miswak is imported into Kashmir through the cross-LoC trade. As per the traders, Halimi Miswak of Karachi is in huge demand due to which its import has increased since the first day of Ramazan.
“Halimi Miswak is soft and doesn’t harm the teeth. It has attracted the Kashmiri people and the sales have increased dramatically this month. Most of the traders here have sold their quota of this variety of Miswak and much more is expected to be received from across the LoC in coming days,” said Mushtaq Ahmad, a wholesaler dealer who runs his business near the Rangher Masjid.
Outside shrines and mosques, stocks of Halimi Miswak are kept decorated for sale. Shopkeepers say that the sale of Miswak is the most on Fridays of this holy month. “On daily basis, I sell more than 50 packets of Miswak,” said Faizan Ahmad, who sells different religious items outside a mosque in Srinagar.
“In the months of Ramazan I prefer Miswak as after Sehri we cannot use toothpaste to brush our teeth in the month of Ramazan,” said Owais Ahmad, a customer.
Earlier, Miswak would reach Kashmir through the Wagah border in Punjab, but since the cross-LoC trade was opened at Uri, it has begun to reach the valley in huge amount.
From Kashmir, the Halimi Miswak is supplied to different states of India.
“From here we export Halimi Miswak to different markets in India, including Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Mumbai and New Delhi,” said Tanveer Nabi, a trader in Gow Kadal area.
Apart from Halimi Miswak, there are different varieties of Miswak such as Olive, Labika, Al Khalij, Alhadi, etc, that are sold in Kashmir markets.
The Miswak is said to have many health benefits and research suggests that Miswak contains a number of natural antiseptics that kill harmful microorganisms in the mouth. It also contains tannic acids that protect the gums from disease and aromatic oils that increase salivation.