IIOJK people condemn ban on sacrificing of bovine

Grand Mufti calls it interference in religious affairs

Srinagar, July 17 (KMS): In Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir, people have strongly condemned the arbitrary ban imposed by the authorities on slaughter of “bovine animals and camels” on the upcoming Eid-ul-Azha.

While those associated with the trade of these animals have called it an “economic crackdown”, the religious clerics have termed it interference in religious affairs. The general public is worried about the animals they have already bought. And everyone is questioning the timing of the “diktat”.

On Thursday, the Director, Planning, Animal Husbandry and Fisheries department, wrote to the Divisional Commissioner and the Inspector General of Police, informing them of the ban on slaughter of cows, calves, and camels. The director referred to a communication from the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Government of India.

The communication from New Delhi has called for ban on slaughter and transportation of animals in the name of Animal Welfare Laws. The ban has put hundreds across Kashmir in trouble, particularly people who trade animals for a living.

“I have animals worth more than 10 lakh rupees stocked up for sale. I don’t know what to do with the animals now. If the ban is really imposed, I am a doomed man,” said an animal trader from Islamabad district, requesting not to be named.

Another trader said he had more than 15 animals and has sold only three of them. “I don’t even know whether the people I have sold these animals to will take them or not. I am yet to receive the full payment,” he said.

The general public is equally dismayed, with hundreds having already purchased the sacrificial animals. “I bought an animal for sacrifice two days back. Had they announced the ban at least 15 days early, I might not have preferred a bovine animal,” a resident of Kulgam town told media.

Meanwhile, religious clerics say that the ban is interference in the religious affairs of Muslims.

Grand Mufti of IIOJK, Mufti Nasir-ul-Islam, in an interview said the Indian government says they want to win hearts in Kashmir. “Is this how you win hearts? By interfering in the religious affairs of people?” he said.

He added that even if the Indian government wanted to ban the slaughter, they should have done it in a more acceptable manner, where some religious figures would have come forward and talked about this sensitive issue first.

“Besides, it is ill-timed. The order should have been issued much earlier if at all it was to be issued. People have bought animals already and now this diktat,” the Mufti said.

Kashmir, however, has a history of defying such orders. Despite being one of the few places where the slaughter of bovine animals was banned under the law, people have been sacrificing such animals on Eid and otherwise as well, some of them openly.