With the constant threat of violence by so-called gaurakshaks (cow vigilantes) over the slightest hint of a cow being slaughtered, Muslim clerics and scholars are calling upon the community to be doubly careful while celebrating Bakri Eid this year. Their advice? Steer clear of bulls, and offer only sheep, goats and camels as sacrifice to avoid any incidents, reported Mumbai Mirror.
The campaign to avoid bulls as sacrificial offerings has been undertaken by clerics and scholars to protect Muslims from the atrocities of self-appointed cow protectors as they transport the animals for the festival, Maulana Syed Hamid Hussain Shuttari, the spokesperson of the All India Sunni Ulama Board, told the media in Hyderabad on Sunday.
The clerics, unanimously, were of the opinion that Muslims were being unfairly targeted by gaurakshaks despite the respect they've shown to people of other faiths by choosing not to sacrifice cows during the festival for the past many years.
The community leaders also noted the fact that while Muslims were regularly facing violence over unsubstantiated claims, no action was taken when 200 cows succumbed to hunger in a shed run by a BJP leader. Religious leaders were of the opinion that boycotting bulls would affect the business of major slaughterhouses, most of which were owned by Hindus, reported Mumbai Mirror.
The clerics claimed that the campaign had not been initiated due to "political pressure or apprehensions from Hindutva forces", but to inspire the country's Muslim population to stand firm in the face of challenging times. "This is an attempt to breach the country's communal harmony in the name of religion. Indian Muslims are mired in challenging times, and Hindutva forces are trying to damage the Muslim community," said Dr Syed Aasif Umri, the vice-president of Jamiat Ahle Hadees, Hyderabad and Secunderabad.
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