Muslims in Kerala are now sponsoring hundreds of sacrificial animals to their poor brethren in North and North-Eastern states on the day of Eid.
Various relief and service organisations of different Kerala Muslim sects collect the fund from community members in Kerala and the amount is handed over to co-coordinators in respective states to buy sacrificial animals.
Kerala-based Relief and Charitable Foundation of India, promoted by prominent Sunni leader Kanthapuram A P Aboobacker Musaliyar, has made arrangements to distribute sacrificial meat to 50,000 families in 15 states.
Its all-India coordinator Muhammed Shafi said there are Muslim families in many North Indian villages which would not get sacrificial meat. “In Kerala, even a mahallu with 500 families would be sacrificing 20 to 30 animals on the day of Eid.”
“Kerala Muslim families under such mahallu committees would get huge quantity of meat. Lavishness is tangible with a family of five members, sometimes, getting meat of 5 kg or 10 kg on the day. Hence, we thought to help those people who are not lucky to get sacrificial meat. This time, we have focused on flood-hit Kashmir region,’’ says Shafi.
Shafi said a section of affluent Muslims in Kerala are offering sacrificial animal in Kerala and also outside the state. “Some are sponsoring the sacrificial animal only to our scheme. We want to take two kg of sacrificial meat to a five-member family in the North Indian villages, where the animals sponsored from Kerala would be sacrificed.”
The practice of Kerala Muslims offering sacrificial animals to North Indian states had existed in the past in stray incidents of interventions, but it got an organised nature only in last two years.
“The animal to be scarified would be decided by local leaders in respective states, depending upon the ban on particular animals. In some states, only goat is allowed as sacrificial animal, whereas in other states we are allowed to kill male buffalo,” said Shafi.
Jamaat-e-Islami in Kerala has a Qurbani (sacrifice of livestock) scheme to take sacrificial meat to impoverished Muslim villages in North Indian states. Its coordinator Abdul Latheef Kaloor said their activity targeted 2 lakh families. Last year, 1.75 lakh families had benefited from this offer.
He said instead of offering the animal in Kerala, many are now willing to perform the act in other states. This would ensure that every member of the community gets a share of the sacrificial meat, he said.
Other Muslim segments in Kerala are also engaged in sponsoring sacrificial animal in North India in various extents.