Eid-Ul-Adha is just around the corner, likely to happen on 21st July on Wednesday in Pakistan and perhaps, around the world. When adults are pooling to share the cost of an animal, children couldn’t contain their excitement feeding and cuddling their animals. As customary, doctors have been appearing on T.V shows, requesting people to ensure hygiene and control in their diet. Just like the last year, even this year, we have been fearing another ravaging wave of Corona, conceivably, Delta variant; but unlikely 2019, humans have learned to live with it, (a psychological effect) which is totally normal but here in Pakistan “learned to live” implies a DANGEROUSLY RECKLESS BEHAVIOUR than the previous years. Yeah, you guessed it right, people are not going to follow SOPs. Nevertheless, this article aims to highlight the most obvious-yet-so-neglected elephant in the room, I mean UNHYGIENIC practices around this day.
As above-mentioned Pakistani people can not afford to have an individual sacrificial animal, although the thin minority could do it, that doesn’t cloud the middle-class, who goes for a combined sacrifice to pool the cost and then share the meat; and this is something we appreciate about communal unity. Again, what Eid-ul-Adha is about, if it doesn’t nurture, compassion and empathy in your heart for the underprivileged who can not afford their sacrifice? Precisely, it’s the primary objective of Eid-ul-Adha (bearing in mind the obedience of Hazrat Ibrahim A.S for Allah, earning him the title of Khalilulla). Having said that, it’s really unfortunate to confess that today sacrifice has been reduced only to slitting the throat of an animal and forgetting about all other responsibilities altogether, i.e HYGIENE.
A man found a thorny branch on his way and removed it so people would not step on it, Allah forgave his sins and led him into Jannah” In the other Hadith the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) could be narrated saying “Cleanliness is half faith”
Generally, before a week, people start buying their sacrificial animal. Fact that the safety of the animals befalls their owners, they try to keep them as near as possible to their homes, not far from the neighbourhood; seeing at least 5-6 animals in one street is quite regular. Now, for a while living with those animals, breathing the air filled with the unpleasant odour and flies being drawn to their waste is equally unhygienic but the real problem begins on the day of the sacrifice. Having slit the throat of the animals, people let the blood flow into the streets or the adjacent drainpipes and throw the animal remains, for instance, stomachs and intestines in the streets expecting garbage-hauliers from the municipal community to remove them. Unfortunately, it is not removed for days, letting the wastes rot and decompose in the open air for weeks, drawing flies and mosquitoes(and as we know most often they are the cause of transmitting diseases to humans). As a result, humans could suffer from diseases, mainly, gastroenteritis, for instance, diarrhoea, vomiting leading to dehydration and even kidney failure. Consciously or unconsciously, we have been infecting our children, our environment and even ourselves.
Islam places a great emphasis on physical cleanliness and it could be assessed from the words of our Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) as “Cleanliness is half faith” besides, it also determines Haqooq-ul-Ibad (the rights of people). We throw wastes in the streets disregarding the saying of our Prophet (PBUH) that “A man found a thorny branch on his way and removed it so people would not step on it, Allah forgave his sins and led him into Jannah” so it’s not just our civic duties but even the religion that defines our identity, demands us to practice hygiene. We know that, right? But do we even follow these words? I am not sure if we do.
Without any doubt, given the devil-may-care attitudes, don’t cause any harm to the elite of government, they are already in better health, but it’s the common people who will suffer so they will have to play their active role.
The problem is quite conspicuous but what is the solution? In my opinion, keeping the purpose of Eid-Ul-Adha (individual and communal growth) in mind, people and the government with their combined actions should work out the issue,
Ideally, It’s high time our Government start thinking about adopting UAE Or Saudi Arabia’s sacrificial procedure. For instance, they locate some places for the day of sacrifice, where people just choose an animal and leave it for the butchers (with a fixed and reasonable price) to sacrifice it, far from the community, and having done with all the work, their meat is delivered to their homes. FRESH AND CLEAN WITHOUT CONTAMINATING THE ENVIRONMENT. Though optimistic, I believe, we can not expect our government to accommodate the above-mentioned protocol overnight or even in decades, so we could go for the option that our government could supervise, for instance FACILITATING THE WASTE DISPOSAL. Cleaning-Camps in every locale could be opened for a while, steering and disposing of the waste; in addition to that, an official contact (accommodating CITIZENS PORTAL) be communicated that could be used for communication. People will have to be guided about the proper disposal until sanitary workers reach and collect them.
People, on the other hand, will have to cooperate with the government, without any doubt, given the devil-may-care attitudes, don’t cause any harm to the elite of government, they are already in better health, but it’s the common people who will suffer so they will have to play their active role. After sacrifice, the first step should be washing blood with bleach or another detergent to remove any harmful substance. Furthermore, wastes (intestines and stomach) should be properly disposed of, for instance, dumping in the grounds (away from the community) or landfills and contact the sanitary workers to collect them as soon as possible, removing any threat of the danger. In another case, those wastes could be laid in bags putting them in trash-bins avoiding any leakage until the workers collect them.
This earth is our home so we will have to keep it clean for the sake of our health. With these small steps, requiring no hard labour but an organised effort, if every individual assumes one’s responsibility under any capacity to clear even the front of one’s own home, collectively it would clear the whole territory and environment, obviously.