New Delhi: Eid-ul-Zuha, the festival of reminding one of submission to God and the feeling of sacrifice and obedience attached to it, is being celebrated across the world on Monday.
President Pratibha Patil, Prime Minister Mamohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi have greeted the nation on the occasion.
"On the festive occasion of Eid-ul Zuha, I express my warm greetings and best wishes to all my fellow citizens and to my Muslim brothers and sisters, in particular," President Patil said in her message.
"May this unique festival strengthen the foundations of national unity and harmony and inspire us to work for the well-being of human beings," she said.
Vice President Hamid Ansari said the festival highlights the virtues of sacrifice and inspires mankind for inculcating the spirit of compassion and love towards the downtrodden.
In a separate message, the Prime Minister said it was an occasion to reaffirm the commitment to work for the welfare of those who are less privileged.
"May Eid-ul Zuha bring peace, prosperity and joy for everyone," Singh said.
Eid-ul Zuha or the festival of sacrifice is celebrated by Muslims across the world to commemorate the willingness of Prophet Ibrahim to sacrifice his son Ismail as an act of obedience to God, according to Islamic scriptures.
The festival is celebrated annually on the 10th day of Zil-Hajj, the last month of the lunar Islamic calendar, which this year falls on November 7.
It is also known as Eid-ul-Azha. In Urdu-speaking communities, it is known as Eid-e-Qurban, or more commonly in the sub-continent as the Bakr Eid (festival of goats).
The underlying truth is that this festival of sacrifice brings man and God close to each other. In fact, it is not the sacrifice of a camel, goat, sheep, ram or lamb but of one's own self, happiness, comfort and affluence in the name of God.
It might appear quite barbaric to many as the sacrificing act takes lives of umpteen animals. But these sacrifices also serve the cause of conservation and keep the animal population in check.
With PTI Input
First Published: Monday, November 07, 2011, 09:16