Tamil Nadu

Camel slaughter ban: Mixed response from Islamic outfits

Camels housed in Old Washermenpet ahead of the Bakrid Festival celebrations in Chennai last year.   | Photo Credit: File Photo

The Madras High Court’s recent order refusing to permit camel slaughter in Tamil Nadu during the Bakrid festival has evoked mixed reactions among Islamic outfits and animal rights activists.

Opposing the verdict, M.H. Jawahirullah, president, Manithaneya Makkal Katchi, said that the verdict would be challenged in the Supreme Court since it impinges on the rights of Muslims to practice their faith. “According to Islam, Muslims can sacrifice a bull, goat or a camel for Bakrid. It is one of the obligations of Muslims. How can a Muslim, who wants to sacrifice a camel, be barred from doing it?” he asked, adding “We will challenge it.”

According to him, the ban contradicts Article 25 of the Constitution, which states that “all persons are equally entitled to freedom of conscience and the right freely to profess, practise and propagate religion.”

‘Misunderstood Islam’

Countering his views, senior leader of Indian Union Muslim League Kader Mohideen said that several Muslim organisations are calling for ‘camel slaughter’ because they have ‘misunderstood Islam’. “Bakrid is second most important festival for Muslims. And Muslims sacrifice animals and share the meat with the poor and the needy. How does it matter whether the meat that is being shared is a goat or a camel?” he asked.

Mr. Mohideen said that Islam is a religion that is universal and common to Muslims around the world, but people have different cultures.

“Does Tamil Nadu have camels? Why must anyone bring camels from far off places? These people are doing it just to provoke and unsettle the society,” he alleged adding, “slaughtering camels is not a part of Tamil or Kerala’s Muslim culture.”

Animal rights activists, meanwhile, claim that the court has a given a major boost to animal rights by banning camel slaughter. “I am delighted by the verdict,” said V.C. Chinny Krishna, vice-chairman, Animal Welfare Board of India.

Stating that rules of Food and Security Act certifies only five types of animals fit for consumption (bovines, pigs, poultry, sheep/goat and fish), he said that slaughtering camels is simply illegal. “Also, any animal that is being killed has to be done so in a slaughter house. When religious practices contravene the law of the land, the law of the land must prevail over it,” he said.

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Printable version | Dec 1, 2021 10:21:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/Camel-slaughter-ban-Mixed-response-from-Islamic-outfits/article14625100.ece

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