Eid al-Adha OR Bakrid, is a ‘Feast of the Sacrifice’ or “Qurbani”. Usually on Bakrid, an animal is sacrificed as part of Qurbani. The meat from the sacrifice of Eid al-Adha is mostly given away to others. One-third is eaten by immediate family and relatives, one-third is given away to friends, and one-third is donated to the poor. The act symbolizes the willingness to give up things that are of benefit to us or close to our hearts, in order to follow God’s commands. It also symbolizes the willingness to give up some of our own bounties, in order to strengthen ties of friendship and help those who are in need. It recognizes that all blessings come from God, and should open hearts and share with others.
The symbolism is in the attitude – a willingness to make sacrifices in our lives in order to stay on the Straight Path. Each of us makes small sacrifices, giving up things that are fun or important to us.
India a country of rich diversity has many religions, caste and sections of society who live together and have their own traditions. With such diversity, there is a festival almost each and every day. There are major festivals which are celebrated irrespective of caste and religion’s. When festivals are celebrated its important that all enjoy as well as there is no damage to the ecological system, people or harm to any animals. Animal right activist and Environmentalist have taken steps and achieved major reforms in the way festivals are celebrated. Bollywood actress and actresses have participated in various campaigns to address the environment issues.
For instance, during Diwali, many have come up with “Cracker less Diwali”.
Holi is campaigned as “Waterless Holi” and also which urged to not use Chemical colors.
Eco-friendly Ganpati by beautiful Dia Mirza where she is suggesting to have “Eco-friendly Ganpati Idols” which will not harm the environment.
These campaigns have been successful and have brought changes in society. People are using less crackers and making sure that no animals are harmed. Water-less Holi has been most successful where the Government itself has urged people to use less water. Eco-friendly Ganpati is a boom, which has been extensively used in Mumbai, Pune and other cities of Maharashtra.
But on the other hand, there is still no sign of such campaign or any activist coming up to have a Eco-friendly Bakrid. Certainly no one is challenging the concept of sacrifice, but when an animal is sacrificed it should be done in an area which does not harm the society. Slaughtering the animal on streets causes spread of infections and pollution. Also, a lot of water is wasted when an animal is slaughtered on streets. The streets of Dhaka last year have been an example on how slaughtering animals on streets can create horrific visuals.
Certainly, there is a need for laws on how many animals should be sacrificed and where. Muslim scholars and activist need to pitch in and have government form laws to avoid spread of diseases, wastage of water and pollution. If there can be secular debates on how a Ganesh Idol should be made, if there can be a secular debate on color to be used during Holi.
If there can be secular debates to make reforms for Holi, Diwali and Ganesh Chaturti, then why not Bakrid ?