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Eid-ul-Azha, the festival of sacrifice, today

Srinagar, Aug 21: Eid-ul-Adha, the festival of sacrifice, would be observed across Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday.
Huge congregational Eid prayer gatherings are expected at Srinagar’s Eidgah in Downtown and Dargah Hazratbal, apart from other Eidgahs, Masjids and Shrines where Islamic scholars shall throw light on the significance of Eid-ul-Adha.
A spokesman of Anjuman-e-Auqaf Jamia Masjid Nowhatta said the congregational Eid-ul-Adha prayers would be offered at Eidgah in Downtown at 9 am. In a statement, the spokesman said Kashmir’s chief cleric Mirwaiz Umar Farooq will deliver the Eid sermon, highlighting the significance of Qurbani and Eid-ul-Adha, from 8 am onwards.
Eid-ul-Adha is celebrated on the 10th day of the Islamic calendar’s last month Dhu’l-Hijjah and on this day, a Muslim offers a goat or sheep as a sacrificial animal while the sacrifice of one camel and a calf suffices for the vow of seven Muslims.
Allah ordered Ibrahim (AS) to sacrifice his son Ismail (AS). When the blindfolded father moved the blade on his son’s throat to carry out the divine command, an animal from heaven replaced Ismail.
It is to celebrate the absolute submission of Prophet Ibrahim (AS) to Allah’s command and the saving of Ismail’s life that Muslims offer animal sacrifices on Eid-ul-Azha.
The big congregational Eid prayers are also expected at Khadi Mill Alochi Bagh here.
As per the Islamic teachings, the Muslims across the State will start performing the act of sacrificing animals following the congregational Eid prayers as this Eid is being observed to commemorate Prophet Ibraham’s (AS) willingness to follow Allah’s command to sacrifice his son Ismaeel (AS).
Meanwhile, markets in Kashmir valley, particularly in the summer capital, wore a festive look on Tuesday as residents went on a shopping spree, including for sacrificial animals, to prepare for Eid-ul-Azha.
The Consumer Affairs Department fixed a ceiling of Rs 210 per kilogram of live animal but the rate list was being observed in breach, indicating a higher demand for the animals this year.
“The rate list issued by the government departments exists only on paper as the animals are sold at the rate of Rs 240 to Rs 260 per kilogram,” Mohammad Ishaq, a city resident, said.
A mutton dealer has brought in camels from Rajasthan to be sacrificed this Eid. While few people showed interest in buying these animals, a large crowd gathered at places where these are put on sale.
Some animals are fetching the mutton dealers three to four times the actual value.
“We are selling the live animals at Rs 220 per kg but there are some sheep and goats which have higher price. The customers are willing to pay more for animals which look beautiful,” Mohammad Ayoub, a mutton dealer, said.
Elsewhere, bakeries, confectioneries and ready-made garment showrooms witnessed heavy footfall over the past few days as people made purchases for Eid.
However, the business community claimed that the sales were not as good as they had expected.
We have had a tough decade with agitations claiming three seasons in 2008, 2010 and 2016. Then we had 2014 floods which have badly affected the financial condition of the people,” Sajad Ahmad, a shopkeeper, said.
He said extension of GST to Jammu and Kashmir preceded by demonetisation in 2016 also had adverse effect on business in Kashmir.