Hyderabad: Attired in their best, Muslims across Andhra Pradesh offered prayers at mosques, Eidgahs and open grounds before the slaughter of `halal` animals, symbolising the spirit of sacrifice, on the occasion of Eid-ul-Zuha Monday.
Imams, or priests, recalled the great sacrifice made by Prophet Ibrahim and exhorted Muslims to follow his teachings and the Quran for success both in this world and the hereafter.
After the prayers, Muslims sacrificed goats and other `halal` animals commemorating Prophet Ibrahim`s great act of faith many centuries ago.
During the sermons, imams explained how Allah put Prophet Ibrahim to a most difficult trial and he readily agreed to sacrifice his only son Prophet Ismail. The Almighty accepted his sacrifice by replacing Prophet Ismail with a goat.
The meat of the animals sacrificed on the occasion is distributed among neighbours, relatives and the poor.
Also known as Bakrid or Eid-e-Qurban, it is the second major festival of Muslims. They exchange greetings with relatives and friends and treated the visitors to their homes with sweets.
In Hyderabad, the biggest congregation was held at the historic Mir Alam Eidgah where over 200,000 people offered prayers. The historic Mecca Masjid witnessed the second biggest congregation.
Eid was also celebrated in other towns of the state with people turning out in large numbers at Eidgahs and mosques to offer prayers.
Muslims constitute about 10 percent of the state`s 84 million population.