Please don’t kill my goat

Published: November 3, 2010

Animal sacrifice: when will we move beyond this barbaric, arcane ritual? PHOTO: FARAH AHED

Animal sacrifice: when will we move beyond this barbaric, arcane ritual? PHOTO: FARAH AHED Animal sacrifice: when will we move beyond this barbaric, arcane ritual? PHOTO: FARAH AHED Animal sacrifice: when will we move beyond this barbaric, arcane ritual? PHOTO: FARAH AHED

My neighbours just bought these three cute little goats home, one each for their three little kids. They probably did that so the kids wouldn’t fight with each other while taking their new pets for evening walks, daily feeding, petting and other such childhood goodness which occurs at this time of the year.

I have always loved this Eid for the chance to make new goat friends. What I don’t like about this Eid is when we proceed to manhandle those gentle creatures, force them to the ground, watch our elders slit the throats of our new companions, string them up, skin them, bleed them dry, cook them and serve their innards fresh for dinner all on the same day.

When will we move beyond this barbaric, arcane ritual?

There is a reason why the act of butchery has been increasingly mechanized and hidden from society. Necessary evil though it is, there is absolutely no need for huge swathes of society to learn to murder a living creature, much less an intelligent creature, and worse, one you have kept and raised in your own home.

There is no need to take a symbolic gesture to such extremes in a world that is much changed from the times when this form of sacrifice was the norm. It is unhealthy for young children, and adults to experience (and perpetuate) violence on an animal.

I’m not even going to get into the nitty gritty of the roots of this ritual and why or why not it can or cannot, evolve into something less brutal. Google knows more than I do on that subject. I’m not going to stamp on it by citing the occasional case of men and women suffering from psychosis who proceed to slaughter their children in the name of God.

I am also not going to talk about how the psychological impact of seeing and inflicting this form of violence on a living creature may or may not be a causal factor behind a society’s desensitization to violence; an individual’s openness to committing further acts of violence; the confusion in a young, developing brain about what is morally right and wrong when it comes to killing; how there is a link between serial killers and a tendency towards torturing and murdering animals at a young age.

No the issue is much, much simpler than all the above if we just wake up from our collective slumber and thinly veiled justifications (of which I expect many in the comments) for an act of terror. Yes I said terror, yes I do eat meat, and yes I think there is little justification for hypocrisy, but must we celebrate it? Venerate it? Call it a wondrous thing?

I’m sorry. I just don’t want my streets running red anymore.


Nadya V

Social critic and part-time gossip monger

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • faraz

    What about the poor chicken who are ‘murdered’ everyday in millions? There is nothing barbaric about animal meat; did you ever feel gloomy after eating roasted chicken. I have just one issue; why do butchers partially slit the chicken’s throat and throw it into the drum which produces a disturbing rattling sound for good 5 minutes. Why dont they decapitate the bird in a single stroke? Recommend

  • Tanzeel

    I can’t agree more to your thought provoking article on “Feast of sacrifice”. I wonder how Islam advocated human sacrifice at that time. Allah would not contradict Himself by ordering Hazrat Ibrahim (A.S) to commit what he prohibited even as a test. Infact It’s Satan who advocates evil and vice.Recommend

  • irfan urfi

    INTRESTING ! its Your point of view ! Recommend

  • Alina

    @Faraz You cannot sacrifice the animal in a single stroke because that may cauterize the wound and prevent the blood from draining out completely. When their heart continues to pump it will ensure complete drainage of blood. If a specific method of sacrifice has been defined in Islam, don’t you think there is a posssibility of a logic behind it? Just a thought.Recommend

  • Amna

    Animals slaughtered the zabiha way feel virtually no pain. There have been studies on this.
    And I think it is a huge hypocrisy for you to be eating meat and writing columns like this….lets keep killing animals for food…just away from the public’s eye….doesnt sound very convincing.Recommend

  • Amna

    it was a test to see his willingness to comply. hence he wasn’t required to follow through. Human sacrifice is not ok. Following Allah’s command is. Mind you, I said “Allah’s commands”. Not people’s distorted versions of it.Recommend

  • Zain Hasan

    Nadya I love you for this article, although your essay would be offensive and indigestible for many people as you know this is an ethnocentric society and they have accepted this barbaric tradition as their religion and an ornament of festivity. Eid ul Adha has been always an disturbing event for me, the philosophy of sacrifice is far behind many people even don’t know the actual history of Abraham and his holy son. I am totally agree with you that this encourages our children to be mean with animals and to be cruel with them, but these people have accepted this as a sole expression of their religion. They still love to clap and enjoy when people pull legs of their cows and bulls so that they can slit their necks and start skinning while they bleed.

    @Faraz: what are you trying to say? the author isn’t against slaughtering the point is that public slaughtering isnt psychologically healthy anyway, it isn’t something to enjoy and celebrate in front of minors and infants. We eat meat all year long and we knows that this meat comes from slaughterhouses where they slaughter animals daily but that’s a designated place for that purpose, there are expert butcher and no body claps there. It disturbs, that’s why we are complaining, if you think it is religious, then go and enjoy, maybe it is more important than namaz, zakat, hajj and other mandatory things for you.

    @Tanzeel: Stop preaching about history of that account, read that article carefully then reply.Recommend

  • Dr Dev Mishra

    Do you think the Hindu, particularly the Jain system of belief has a point? Ahimsa, vegetarianism, respect for all living beings.

    Sushil Kumar, world wrestling champion is a vegetarian. Feast on that.
    Dr Dev Mishra, UKRecommend

  • The Only Normal Person Here.

    So you wont give up. Anyways, I dont have to waste my energies much on this write up. Mullah brigade would be coming to get you.

    All the best. Recommend

  • Naeem Siddiqui, Australia


    I agree with you that we now need to be more civilized in celebrating the Eid-ul-Adha, rather then slaughtering animals on streets or on front yard of your house in front of young children its batter to do this in common community centres where only elders can go slaughter their animal and bring the meat at home.

    Unless you want your kid to be professional butcher; showing all the process of slaughtering, skin removing and butchering to young and innocent minds of children makes no sense to me. Recommend

  • Spam Robot

    Are you for real? Probably signs of our time. I can’t decide whether we have become soft or hard. Kill them in Iraq and Afghanistan so that we can pump our SUVs in US.

    This mechanized life if you will has taken us away from the elements and transformed our existence into a virtual sort of world.

    Animal Abuse???? Do you know all the requirements you need to fulfill to perform this “ritual.?” Have you ever seen what happens in these mechanized slaughter houses?

    I hope you step out of your life and see the millions of Pakistanis for whom this “arcane,barbaric” practice is part a daily reality. I wonder how many serial killers are we producing……Recommend

  • Spam Robot


    They do it to drain the chicken of the blood. Recommend

  • Tippu

    good article. it was shocking to see the spectacle. Horror of horrors, kids are a sked to partake in the ritual.

    Now i fully respect the right of people to slaughter the animals and to enjoy meat (as i do) but to do it in full view on the streets is a bit much i think. Recommend

  • Aina

    This is the most stupid thing i have ever read…and regert why i even clicked on this link…Do you have any knowledge of Islam? and the reasons why the concept of qurbani was introduced? You should be ashamed of calling it a barbaric act while its the most liked and respected actas in front of Allah.Recommend

  • Umer

    u r sick … Recommend

  • Fahad

    Animal abuse, barbaric act, brutal etc I think you have used everything to describe this festival. But then, do you really know how much care we should take when we offer a cow/sheep sacrifice? There is no abuse at all. It is essential for us to take good care of the animals and then on the day, sacrifice in Allah’s path.

    Okay, coming to reality and on your comment of ‘murdering”. What we humans are eating are only living things anyway. Fruits and vegetables come from plant and revise your primary science book, yes thank you, they are living things. They breath and feel like all other living things. So you are more brutal eating vegetables because those poor fellows cannot even scream or move when you cut their throat or any other part.

    And then I am sure you belong to a good family where eating meat is no big thing but don’t forget we live in a country where, forget meat, people don’t get to eat simple meal everyday. On Eid al Adha, lots of needy people get the chance to eat meat. You have issues in that? (you can go out and enjoy burgers and don’t like it when poors get to eat meat). Don’t eat animals because they are living things then don’t eat fruits and vegetables also (don’t eat paper also bacause it comes from tree…well eat plastic – lol – that is a bi-product of oil and you know how oil comes!) So starve and die!

    Moreover, these animals (cows/goats/sheeps) have short life so they die anyway. And one question to you: every year we sacrifice millions of animals yet the next year we have no shortage and this has been happening for centuries now – the fact of the matter is that you, and me, are just human and we only use about 5-8% of our brain and the Almighty has created us – don’t question Allah’s judgements and commands. You can never understand – because you (and all of us) are not capable enough.

    Apologies, if I have hurt your feelings in anyway – but Nadya do some research on this with clear thinking and I am sure, Insha Allah you will get the answer.Recommend

  • Realist

    Looks like someone wants to eat Kebabs but does not want to know where they come from. Its a good lesson for kids. “Hey Kids! this is how we make those tasty Kebabs.” Personally, I couldn’t care less. We are predators. If we make our food our friends, what are we going to eat? What is this? Twilight? Recommend

  • Misha

    I’ve taken this stance for a long, long time. Unfortunately in our society, to question anything with remotely religious roots is asking for trouble so I simply make my own stand in not doing it anymore. If I want meat, I can bloody well just buy it from the market.Recommend

  • Shahbaz

    How wonder it is living in Muslim society followed the rules implemented by Allah Almighty whilst
    quizzically describe it is an explicit example of westernize thought and illogical all that what you depict from your so-called concept of bleeding streets…….. Recommend

  • RimShot

    you may prefer the jhatka style which is decapitating the head of the chicken in one stroke. It is followed by punjabis on the other side of the border. I have’nt had a jhatka chicken so i dont know how it tastes also, i cannot fathom how they drain the blood. Recommend

  • zzzz

    It is about minimizing violence ( just as it’s preferable to kill animals vs humans for good, similarly its better to kill plants than animals. If you eat just ripe fruits then there is no violence, since they are meant to be eaten and their seed spread.)

    There is a school of thought which believes that according to Al-Quran, vegetarianism is preferable to a meat based diet. The Qur’an, the Hadith, and the history of Islamic civilization offer many examples of kindness, mercy, and compassion for animals.

    Here is the website

  • zzzz

    More indepth article about the animal sacrifice of “Eid al-Adha”

  • SUB

    That’s waste of internet space on ET. Write a few stupendous paragraphs and generate comments from readers. Sure it’s no measure for the popularity of the writer or the blog. Only thing I would want to avoid is creating a mess in my street or blocking sewerageRecommend

  • SUB

    @Dear Mr. Mishra Sir,

    I hope when you started studying science long before you were educated as a doctor. You may have heard the concept that plants also breathe and are lively beings although in a different way then us humans and animals. Perhaps you should stop eating those poor vegetables alsoRecommend

  • Anynymous

    If at any point you feel the need to move beyond this barbaric, arcane ritual, you can renounce Islam and this will no longer be binding on you. As for the cruelty, this is the best manner to slaughter animals as opposed to automated slaughterhouses. You are free to go down the route of vegetarianism but for me the feeling of slaughtering the goat with your own hands is amazing :)Recommend

  • Munazza sami

    Hey Nadiyaa…Do tell me one thing honestly…R U MUSLIM or not?????????Recommend

  • Fahad

    @anonymous (anynymous)
    “the feeling of slaughtering the goat with your own hands is amazing :)”

    This is so true! I am sure whoever has experienced that will agree :)Recommend

  • Zain Hasan

    It is even more disturbing that mostly people are defending street slaughter, it seems that there brains are already satisfied with barbaric norms and they are totally comfortable watching happening in front of them. It is shocking that few people are even calling writer non Muslim as according to them questioning about any so called religious thing means a person is non religious. You people are same as there were Arabs in Prophet’s time, believe without logic. You just follow what your ancestors had followed without thinking.Recommend

  • Mariam

    This is what you are suppose to do in order to fulfill the sunah, but it would be much better if we have slaughter houses and qurbani can be done there.Recommend

  • Amer

    Dear Nadya,
    You are entitled to your own distorted opinion.It clearly shows that you understood nothing of the Quran and why muslims slaughter animals on Eid Al-Adha etc. I think some people in our Burger class like to eat Burgers these days but think they can ignore where the meat comes from!! After I read your blog, I said to my self, what a waste of 5 minutes of my life reading this crap!Recommend

  • Klues

    You know when the take out broccoli from ground they scream too. We should only eat air.Recommend

  • Chana

    Good ! At last someone raised the point ! Well, for some time I am living in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and I was surprised to find out that even in a conservative wahabi society like this, the open slaughter / qurbani in the streets is NOT ALLOWED anywhere here. Recommend

  • anon

    Hats off for empathy, sensitivity and naivette of the writer. She is feeling sorry for animals in a society where there is hardly any compassion for human beings. My sincere, profound comliments!Recommend

  • Nonsense Article

    “When will we move beyond this barbaric, arcane ritual?” This so called barbaric and arcane ritual is a part of Islam. And yes Google may know better then you, so google the “advantages” of this day. In the end, I can’t give a reason as you have already made up your mind, but what i will give you is a suggestion. Be a vegetarian.Recommend

  • Amer

    I thought again of what you wrote here and what I said. While I agree that young children should not be the guests of honor in witnessing an animal slaughter and animal slaughter on Eid should be done in a specified area, I don’t agree to it being an act of terror. I agree that animal slaughter should be done in a specified area for the hygienic reasons along with the simple reason that there is alot of show off in our society. People like to show off their animals to their neighbours and sometime it seems to the whole city. They don’t keep in mind that their neighbours might not be able to afford sacrificial animals etc. In any case, I feel that the sacrific of the animals is for Allah alone and anything that’s for Allah should not be advertised to the world with pomp & splendor. Recommend

  • o.izen

    v speechless on how u hav learned 4m ur so call’d socity,u shd hav learnd how,nd y we,Muslims,Sacrifice our lamb nd Goats,one should know his/her roots,4m where it all came,nd y was it so.Recommend

  • Ali

    wow.. tolerant.. Recommend

  • Waqqas Iftikhar

    i like chicken…..and beef….dont like mutton….so you can have the damn goats….Recommend

  • vikas ranjan

    Do you have any knowledge of Islam? and the reasons why the concept of qurbani was introduced? You should be ashamed of calling it a barbaric act while its the most liked and respected actas in front of Allah.

    I confess I am no authority on Islam, however, the concept predates Islam. In fact it was Abraham who was asked by God to sacrifice his son Issac. Abraham was asked to bring his son to a desolate mountain.Abraham left his servant at the foot of the mountain and only Abraham and Issac went up the mountain, where God spared Issac and provided a ram for the sacrifice.Had God been interested in a public spectacle, he could have asked Abraham to carry out the sacrifice in the city square.
    I think Nadya V was also making a similar point in pleading,”I’m sorry. I just don’t want my streets running red anymore.”
    Sacrifice by all means, but do it in private as God had asked Abraham to do.Recommend

  • Rakhshanda Ali

    This is a very daring article.Recommend

  • MMAli

    Non-muslims ever try to create propaganda against Muslims belief. Most of them eat meat but not beef.Recommend

  • anonymous

    how sweet and childish argument has made a space in above text. :-)Recommend

  • wehshi

    okay, i guess you must be a vegetarian…if your not….where do you think the meat in your “aloo gosht” comes from? or the fillet in your chicken burger comes from? its a natural process of life…God made these animals for the purpose of meat, milk and leather…..get over it, its been happening for thousands of years now.
    secondly…what kind of “violence”? animals are slaughtered the islamic way..they are Halal…they are not chopped open from the middle…or their brains are not smashed open… else should they be slaughtered? seriously! Recommend

  • Areebah Shahid

    Okay one question to the writer and the commentators: SERIOUSLY?? Let’s all please grow up about this! Writing a column for the freaking sake of writing it frankly makes no sense! BECOME a vegetarian, stop savoring juicy steaks and may be you’d be taken seriously! Practice what you preach :) Animals are slaughtered almost all across Pakistan in exactly the same way and so you’re a traitor to your own cause if you’re still eating that meat!! :)Recommend

  • Muhammad Sarfraz Abbasi

    This crap thrown this article has nothing than mere telling how much my so called burgers are gone away from the religion. They even dont whats the lesson behind the sacrifices that we do on Eid. They dont fast because they believe its outdated, they are anti-veil because they think takes away women freedom. They dont try to learn why these things are suggested to follow by Islam. All they can do, they open up their mouth by using the small brain which think beyond what they have learned through the unIslamic society. My suggestion is simple please, if you claim to be a Muslim than come up with an Islamic perspective, tell one good reason that why this sacrifice make you angry? Tell me that why your love your goat is great than Allah who has created you and your goat and will not seek permission from you when he will decide to take your life. Learn before this life temporary life goes away and new endless life begins.. Recommend

  • Aina

    @vikas ranjan:

    Allah has asked to share it with all. There are clear orders on how to distribute meat among relatives, the poor and needy people.Recommend

  • Fahad

    Nadya, and many others who say it should not be done in streets.

    I think you people have no idea on the volume of slaughter thats done on the first day of eid – I was wondering how can we reserve a place for that.

    And I do not live in Pakistan but I go there specially for eid-ul-adha – just to enjoy street slaughtering because I think we are not doing anything wrong + we have to do this to fulfill our responsbility so why not do it together with others. Come on guys, there is nothing wrong in it and we love it and we also love the BBQ afterwards. can’t wait to go now!!

    Now haters go on and hate me :)Recommend

  • sarah Haider

    Your write-up is written in such an authoritative tone as if you are trying to impose your opinion over people here. You have already made your points clear in your article that you do not wish people to comment here and link your views to the background of the ritual by continually informing people that your ARE NOT TALKING ABOUT this and that. I think most females do not like to watch the sacrificial ritual so that’s a normal thing.
    Seriously, this article is a total waste of space.Recommend

  • Marium Kaludi

    @Vikas Ranjan
    Its amazing how a non-muslim can go into the depth of an islamic practice – more than the muslims of today do! Surely nowhere has Allah instructed us to make a public spectacle out of the sacrifice. If only the rich who indulge in ‘competitions’ as to who sacrifices the more expensive and ‘classy’ animals can understand this..

    And as for what the author says: “how there is a link between serial killers and a tendency towards torturing and murdering animals at a young age.”
    I believe its the responsibility of the parents/elders to educate their children that its the beauty of Islam that even though almost every religion allows its believers to eat meat, Islam instructs us to cause as little pain as possible when sacrificing the animals even! And that mercy and compassion are rather important elements of the religion. The sacrifice shown in this light can only do good. Recommend

  • Amer

    @Fahad: I don’t live in Pakistan either but I DO understand why it shouldn’t be done on the streets. I don’t know where you live but have you ever thought why it isn’t done in the streets of the UAE or Saudia or Kuwait or Qatar or Malaysia or Canada or the UK or US etc? All of thisThink about it bro…. I have lived in 4 countries out of the ones I named above and I know that it’s mainly because of health, safety and hygienic reasons.
    I don’t know about you but I certainly don’t like a cow running down the roads of my neighbourhood with half it’s head cut off etc. I have seen such scenes in Karachi….Recommend

  • Anon

    You sound awfully smug for someone who eats meat :)Recommend

  • USL

    Sometimes I wonder if you write so badly just so your readers could berate you :)Recommend

  • Ali

    Yeah don’t celebrate .. what billions of people call Eid. It’s butchery.
    Don’t celebrate marriage… it’s in fact a celebration to submit a gal to a person’s needs, It’s slavery
    Don’t celebrate Eid after fasting, It’s the celebration of abstinence, which is stupid
    Don’t celebrate anything….Recommend

  • Hammad

    strongly disagree….there are other ways of stopping violence..this is no cure to our problems…Recommend

  • Hammad

    @Zain Hasan:
    dude the point is not in following wat our ancestors did…u got it wrong!!! its jus a commemorative event establishing how Hazrat Ibrahim was ready to sacrifice his own son! For heaven’s sake…its not about slaughtering on the streets or slaughtering in some reserved place..its the ritual which is more important!! perhaps, u shouldn’t let ur children pluck tomatoes outa the tomato plant cuz then the tomato dies too…be realistic..and u guys think this brings violence, wat abt the hundreds who die in karachi everyday?? its absolutely amazing how ppl can agree with wat the writer has to say…Recommend

  • Shumaila

    I don’t have much against the issue of sacrificing animals on Eid – though it does seem barbaric, the huge number of animals given over to slaughter on one day – shudder. But I agree that the way they do it in the streets is just unhealthy, ostentatious and disgusting.Recommend

  • Ali

    Wow, please read up on your Islamic history and the fact that it is a compulsory ritual for those who can afford it. I don’t like seeing the streets red with blood either so I agree with you that there must be a more hygienic way of dealing with this situation however, do not forget the first and foremost Pakistan’s proper name is the ISLAMIC Republic of Pakistan and slaughtering cattle is a commandment of Allah.Recommend

  • Noor Muhammad

    Waaaoo…. great.

    First you should understand why do people slaughter animals.

    Why Do People Perform This Act

    People do this for the sake of religion called Islam. Allah, who is creator of this universe; who also created us;He ordered His followers to slaughter the animal on 10 Zil Haj. I think Creator always have best intention for its creature. In short, this this belief which guides people to do this act.

    Religious Need
    The Quran has referred to three objectives which must be borne in mind while offering a sacrifice.

    Sacrifice of animals constitutes the symbols of Allah’s worship.
    Offering of the sacrifice is a practical expression of ones gratitude to Allah for His many blessings.
    Offering of the sacrifice is a declaration of Allah’s greatness and glory.

    Impact on Economy
    The religious and spiritual importance of this obligation is paramount; the practice has comprehensive economic implications for the livestock raisers in rural economy.

    A conservative estimate has put the total number of animals slaughtered in Pakistan in 2007-08 Eid ul Azha, at 5.5 million heads with 2.2 million as large animals (catties and buffaloes) and 3.3 million small animals (sheep and goats). The total value of these animals at the prevalent market price amounted to Rs 80 billion which after adjustment for statistical discrepancies, implied a total direct injections of Rs 70 billion to the rural economy and about Rs 10 billion as the value of the bi-products resulting from fulfillment of this obligation of the practice.

    Growth of live Stock

    The classical economists’ maxim of laisez-fair implied, let all men do what their abilities, facilities and market conditions make it natural for them to do.
    Livestock’s raising is one such classic example of the natural product of the rural economy that corresponds to the natural environmental and infrastructure i.e. their feeding, housing disposal of wastes, cleanliness, attendance requirements etc are well acceded to in the rural environment, and hence rightly expected to sustain and improve life of the rural population.
    Livestock also serves as one source in which the rural population value their wealth.
    The current population of the large animals is 54.155 million and that of the smaller ones in 87.976 million. If their current growth, with the obligation of sacrifice is continued, the number of large animals in the year 2012 is projected to be 59.48 million and that of the smaller animals as 97.960 million. If the practice of sacrifice is abandoned in favour of equal amount of alms distribution, then there would be a net addition of 5.5 million head to the large animals and 14 million to the small animals, thereby adding a net 20 million heads to the livestock over the next 4 years.

    Bi Products
    The fulfillment of the obligation of sacrifice also produced three major bi products namely animal’s skin, wool and slaughtering services. The market survey revealed the average value of the skin of large animal as 1500 rupees and that of the small animals as Rs 200/- . The average value of raw wool produced was estimated as Rs 50 from small animals. On the average, butcher took Rs 800 for large animals and Rs 400 for small animals for his services. The total value of the bi products has been estimated to be Rs 7205 million i.e. Rs 7.205 billion.

    In Short
    The sacrifice of animals at Eid ul Azha has comprehensive fallout for the rural economy. The market is very competitive and the practitioners have greater regard for quality. The deductions made from the study signifies the practical importance of the injunctions of Islam. It has also been point out that the practice is a built in arrangement to stimulate the rural economy and balance the growth of livestock.

    My Agreement With Your Point
    Yes, i do agree that this should not be on streets but can be in home & people should not throw blood and other material outside. There should be proper mechanism to collect this garbage or there can be slaughter houses in every town and city, where people can go to slaughter animals.

    If its still barbaric for you then please don’t go outside during this barbaric act. Simple, just close your eyes and don’t go outside. :)

    Why can’t we give freedom to people?
    Imposing your feelings on others is another act against freedom which you might like to enjoy so be patient and be tolerant. Respect other’s views, emotional attachments and feelings.

    I hope this might help you to understand, why is it important ?

    Cheers :)Recommend

  • Amer

    Noor Muhammad:
    Awesome Analysis! I think you would have written a much better blog then Ms. Nadya V.
    She just seems so confused in her own shell! :) But she’s entitled to her own opinion, Vege Burger maybe? or maybe just our own Confused Burger class….lolRecommend

  • Taha Kehar

    I felt this to be a very superficial justification for what has been termed a barbaric act. There are too many contradictions in your piece. Firstly, you’re ending suggests that you disagree with this practice as it ruins your streets. And yet, you’ve presented a heartfelt appraisal of how this Eid provides you with an opportunity to make “goat friends” who you empathize with. Secondly, you are, to some degree, making a mountain of a molehill by connecting this form of slaughter with violent behavior. For most people, this practice offers spiritual well-being rather than the thrill of inflicting control over a harmless creature. There is always a diversity of perspective in these matters and your perspective, in particular, depicts the human nature as cold, ignorant and domineering. Recommend


    Okay so you are trying to portray that you are one of those misfits in the society who have out of the box thinking and you are from the lot who can bring revolution?
    Ms.V, I must tell you today that you are one of the many wannabes who are constantly trying to grab attention. You wrote after a long time, so I was wondering why ET looks so clean these days.
    There are two ways to get popular, either write something outstanding, or write crap. Congratulation on you success, as you have chosen the latter.Recommend

  • Saba

    I would take you more seriously if you weren’t so condescending about the slaughter itself. The ritual itself is Islamic- to declare it barbaric and outdated will get you a lot of well-deserved opposition.

    If you had stuck to the debate about the WAY the ritual is carried out, you would have had a lot of support, including from me. A lot of support which you lost by declaring that you yourself eat meat.

    So basically the people who slaughter, clean, prepare, and cook the animals are the barbarians but you are not while you gobble it up while the same animal’s blood runs in the street? Like I said, really hard to take you seriously after that because I don’t like hypocrites. Recommend

  • Ghausia

    1) Who’s forcing kids to watch the qurbani? Tell them the same thing you say when their pet would die under ordinary circunmstances.

    2) Wow, hypocrite much? Do you even KNOW where those burgers you adore come from?

    3) What USL said.

    4) Yeah, once a year sacrifices desensitize people to violence, not bombs exploding and people dying every other week.

    5) The streets are already running with blood, or do you not live in Pakistan?

    6) Your blogs get dumber and more senseless by the day.Recommend

  • hello

    hahah this is funnyRecommend

  • Someone with knowledge

    Nadya, I really think you should study your religion before writing such rubbish! Express Tribune should not have posted this! It is not barbaric, it is a ritual which we perform as an act for God. And really, unless you’re a hardcore vegetarian, you’re being overly dramatic about the slaughter. If it bothers you so much, don’t watch it. What a disappointed this was!Recommend

  • Raheel

    come on…. we pay for the animal, we feed the animal we try to keep him and his surroundings clean….then we slaughter with utmost care and we have professionals to do that….then we clean it and cook it in proper fashion…..

    on the contrary look what is happening in Animal community …i see every day @ NatGeo Cat Family first of all running after the sweet beautiful Bambi/ Buffalo and Zebra (especially after infant) ….then ripping it apart….and eat while blood is dipping….on top of all the Mr. Lion doesn’t even pay for it….and kids watch that all the time….no body call that barbaric…they call it Nature? it’s so unfair and very ignorant of you to call this civilized act on human end barbaric…by the way infant sacrifice is not allowed :-)

    According to Dr. Javaid Iqbal we have conservatives (total rejection) westernized ( total acceptance) and modern Muslims ( reconciling Islam with modern development) you seems to be the westernized one but at least has the decency to keep your cutie pie hypocrisy down… as pointed can’t call that barbaric and still enjoy the meat ?Recommend

  • Saad

    this is freaking stupid!!!
    tomorrow u ll stand up n say “whats da point of gathering all these people for haj?”

    u dun bend ur religion according to ur thoughts….

    i regret even reading this….

    u cant questioning your religion like this…

    its plainly laid…. NOTHING should be dearer to u other than ur ALLAH and his PROPHET…

    NOTHING = not even ur kids

    this is where EID UL AZHA originated from….

    i feel sorry for u allRecommend

  • Mohammed Ibrahim Qazi

    I partially agree with Nadya for “There is a reason why the act of butchery has been increasingly mechanized and hidden from society” though this ritual is not a mere “religious” legacy of Prophet Abraham perhaps it strings to the populace of social rituals of sacrifice and vigor to enhance the metaphor of social wellbeing in any societal system of justice and welfare for its inhabitants.

    Mohammed Ibrahim Qazi
    Polticial Aide to
    Lord Ahmed of Rotherham
    House of Lords, United Kingdom Parliament
    Westminster – LondonRecommend

  • http://deleted vikas ranjan

    .Non-muslims ever try to create propaganda against Muslims belief. Most of them eat meat but not beef

    Could you clarify the statement please?Are you saying that Christians, Jews, Ahmadis, Animists,Japanese or Communist Chinese do not eat beef? OR, Do you imply that as they eat beef all of them are Muslims?Recommend

  • shan
  • zzzz

    @Noor Muhammad:
    Allah never wants us to harm animals or kill cattle. Animal sacrifice is only customary (pre -islamic arabic ritual) not mandatory in any way.

    Al-Hafiz B.A. Masri writes in Animals in Islam (p. 117), that the well-known Sheikh Farid Wagdi wrote, “[T]here may come a day when Muslims shall have to substitute the rite of animal sacrifice with other methods of giving alms.”

  • parvez

    Nadya you are an amazing writer. Your blog is not even one day old and you have possibly 67 negative comments, 2 half and half and 1 supporting you. I haven’t actually counted but that’s the way it looks. I accept the religious significance but the societal aspect of the sacrifice is debatable and I will agree with your views.I do not necessarily agree with your
    choice of words and mode of expression, but then I put that down to you being Nadya V.Recommend

  • Owais

    Just like you do not like the ritual, I do not like you. Just like you cannot make sense out of the ritual, I am unable to make sense out of your rambling, because for you killing the animal is not a problem, celebrating it is. Kill it and eat it. And all is good! Bravo!!Recommend

  • M

    Why cant I view any of the LOADS of previous comments? Or did ET remove them?Recommend

  • Faraz Khanani

    Ever imagined how many animals cows and goats the world would have if they weren’t slaughtered every year? It’s just a concept of natural selection with some human involvement.
    Haven’t you ever noticed that when a cat gives birth to four kittens, usually one or two survive and the rest die. The cat becomes pregnant again. And what do u mean by barbaric? You have to zabiha the animals before you can eat it. Do you think you can eat it raw otherwise? Or do you think killing an animal with electric shocks or whatever means is the more ‘civilized’ way?
    God as created a balance in the universe. This is the reasons why millions of smaller fish are eaten by bigger ones and so on. The same happens with any other creature. I think people should thoroughly research a topic and compare its scientific, religious and social perspectives, then write about it. You bluntly reject a Divine concept because you are antagonistic might be fine for you, but you should have covered it in a rational fashion rather than writing this random article.Recommend

  • aelia

    badly writtenRecommend

  • Ahmed

    A very ill-informed article.Pardon me !

    In the very first place that is not any BARBARIC or ARCANE ritual.Do read its ORIGIN and then have some respect for those who initiated this.

    There is a certain appropriate way to slaughter the animals.It is the responsibility of parents to keep children in their control and away from where they are sacrificing animal.There are certain manners which people have to adopt regarding sacrifice (Qurbani).You don’t have to necessarily become a butcher on Eid Day.Instead you can have one and let him do his work while you keep yourself and your children away if you have problem seeing sacrifice.

    Blood on streets ? Again if one knows manners,he can slaughter animal and can keep good care of blood and other stuff.

    Instead of quoting irrelevant information about animal abuse,have you ever considered to know how this was done in the times of Holy Prophet (PBUH) ?

    Do you know what your Creator commands about sacrifice of animal on Eid day ?

    I request you to know things from every aspect rather than giving ill-informed articles.Recommend

  • http://deleted Ahmed

    @The Only Normal Person Here.:

    Very right Sir ! If those who used religion for their benefits are called Mullah Brigade,then I request people to please tell me which Brigade is this which does not know any thing about religious norms and then criticize the highly respected practices ?

    Kindly assign a name.If there exist people who represented wrong image of religion then there are also those who attack it daily because of their serious lack of knowledge.

    Why do we become blind in identifying this Brigade ?Recommend

  • Wasio Ali Khan Abbasi

    An Economist is an authority regarding Economical issues – Difference of opinion might occur.
    An Engineer is an authority regarding Engineering issues – Difference of opinion might occur
    A Linguist is an authority regarding word articulation – Difference of opinion might occur
    An Astronomer is an authority regarding study of stars – Difference of opinion might occur
    A Historian is an authority regarding Historical Significance – Difference of opinion might occur
    Therefor, an Islamic scholar is best to respond to your blog – Difference of opinion might occur.

    Unfortunately I am NOT an Islamic scholar, so one can consider my opinion as another crap thrown in with all the other craps by all those who have no authority on the subject. I, for one, do not have the ability to slaughter an animal. If you must know, I don’t have the guts to watch even mild horror movies because the sight and gore of blood make me ill, just like in real life the sight and smell of blood and spilled guts of animals make me want to throw up.
    But reading your blog (a waste of cyber space and precious time) forced me to add a few bits to clear my opinion.
    Your thoughts are your own, cherish them until you come across a worthy person who can teach you better regarding Islam. You might change your thoughts then.
    Pakistan has been an agrarian country with joint-family social structure. Muslims of India, particularly those of Sindh and Punjab, have always slaughtered animals out in the open because few had the luxury of large, closed spaces. It’s a tradition that we followed and still follow after independence. We never felt the need to form slaughter houses (except for those who butcher animals as profession on daily basis) and therefor we never did that in Pakistan.
    Moreover, the housing schemes in majority of the urban and rural centers do not provide sufficient space for slaughter within premises or even if they do, much of the work such as skinning, cutting pieces and, in case of multiple people “Hissaydaar” of the sacrifice, piling and distribution of meat.
    There is much that can be told to explain the need for slaughter, but it will not put any affect on you. As I said before, I am no Islamic scholar therefor my comment does not hold any value just like the rest of the commenters here of this blog, I do however question your intent of writing this blog. If it is genuine concern for the animals, then I am content with your views and leave you to your grief which you will soon encounter. But if it was for cheap publicity, then I am afraid I don’t have any good words for you. I leave you to your “Aimaal” and hope you do better next time.Recommend

  • Ahmed

    @ The Only Normal Person Here

    Those who distorted the image of religion are given title of MULLAH BRIGADE ! Kindly assign a title for those who in the very same manner criticize religion on the basis of their lack of knowledge.People have the right to criticize and believe.But criticism must be there after complete knowledge of that which you want to criticize.

    I request people to tell me which BRIGADE is this ?
    Why our critical examination skills become void while identifying this BRIGADE ?Recommend

  • Talha

    I would like to narrate an incident from my childhood, in the late 90’s on a Eid day, the strongest bull was about to get his head chopped off. We the people gathered as spectators and were anxiously waiting to see the cow getting killed in front of us.

    The butcher died his legs, pushed him on the floor and started to cut his throat. In a flash the bull undid his rope and got up with his throat half cut. The bull started running with half his head cut off and we started to run after it trying to capture it again so we can taste its meat.
    Finally he fell and collapsed himself after all that blood loss and the holy ritual was performed.

    The moral of the story is that we are barbarians.Recommend

  • Ghausia

    @vikas ranjan Ahmadis aren’t non-Muslim, they fall into the umbrella term of Muslim, same as Shias do.

    Let the mullah brigade descend upon me with all its wrath now. :DRecommend

  • Mr. B

    If the writer is not a vegetarian, she has absolutely no right in writing this post. Eid ul Azha provides millions of poor people around the world an opportunity to eat something they may only get to enjoy a few times a year. In Pakistan alone, there are millions who can’t afford the luxury of eating meat on a daily basis like the writer, and to call this religious act barbaric and arcane is hypocritical and downright silly.

    And seriously, if the writer claims that Google knows more than her, that’s pretty sad.Recommend

  • Aliyah

    I agree with Wasio Ali Khan.

    Since you declared you love chewing the carcasses of dead animals, you apparently aren’t concerned for the animals themselves, you’re concerned about the spectacle of the event. If you had written an article on that, and the cultural faults in our society, you would have had supporters.

    Since you decided to go off and base half your ranting against Islam and it’s rituals- declaring this Eid barbaric and arcane, you got no support. If you had done some research on Islam, and put the blame on culture instead, you may have come across as a more insightful, professional journalist. But who am I kidding- you’re a gossip monger who doesn’t need to held responsible for anything because you don’t have the guts to use your real name. Do you realize that you’re the ONLY writer on here who doesn’t use their real name?

    Since you like to say things you know are offensive just because you enjoy creating a stir, it’s very convenient that you use an anonoymous alias. If you write articles for another reason, for making people think, for inspiring people, or just finding people who can relate to you, you failed miserably at that. But if you wanted attention, you got it, so congratulations.

    and for the record, I can never take you seriously after trashing Fatima Bhutto and lauding Sara Taseer, for actually COMPARING the two. You call yourself a writer? You probably cite Lindsay Lohan as an icon and Christiane Amanpour as a villian.Recommend

  • Syed Ali Raza

    Tobah karo Nadya… Hawwww. You cannot blame this Islamic ritual for the Taliban / Alqaida. If that’s the case then there were humans thousands of years ago too?? No, It teaches you tolerance and sharing. The meat is diStributed within the social circles God has created for us. Please it is no joke :) May Allah guide you and the rest who hold the religion responsible for the inefficiency of the municipal authorities.Recommend

  • ahmed

    There is way of getting more civilized and stop this unnecessary infliction of blood letting, pain, and suffering of the animals. That is vegetarianism. It is not only healthier but also more ethical. Yes, plants have lives too. But, they don’t have a nervous systems complex enough to suffer the way animals do. The idea is to minimize suffering in this word. Note that vegetarianism and nonviolence (ahimsa) is much older than Islam in subcontinental culture. Lets embrace it.



  • Maryam

    y in the first place we would hide our “Qurbani” , this Eid is all about Qurbani and understanding the scarifice and meaning of the great act of Hazrat Ibrahim alay salam .

    children should know and understand the real meaning of qurbani and why it is done, and that is only possible when they will see it happen.Recommend

  • Danish

    Never have I seen such a wonderful and secular writing in a Pakistani newspaper…….Recommend

  • Muhammad

    Oh well next time why don’t you write something about vegetables and fruits and how its even worse to rip out those deaf and dumb living things and devour them with or without the goat meat. Don’t get me wrong, I see your point, and its pointless!Recommend

  • Ed

    i) Eid ul Adha is NOT meant to be inhygienic because as muslims we know that “Safai nisf eeman hai” (cleanliness is half the faith).

    ii) Simply because muslims in Pakistan do not observe the heightest standards of hygiene does not equate Eid ul Adha with barbarianism.

    iii) It is a matter of Faith that the sacrificed animal does not feel the pain and is blessed. The sacrifice is carried out as a show of obedience. There are countless instances where Islam denounces terrorism and violence, and promotes peace, respect, human dignity, human rights, animal rights and even environmental conservation. Taking things out of context has long been the malicious device of the ignorants.

    iv) In today’s play-stationised world eating a KFC Zinger or a Big Mac while blabbering about Animal Rights is easy. Almost as easy as protesting about China’s human rights records while turning a blind eye to the human rights violantions in Kashmir or Occupied Palestenian territories, or even better, while watching human forms being blown to smithereens by UAVs thousands of miles away on an LCD screen.Recommend

  • ThePatriot

    To those who say the Islamic way of slaughter, inlike the rest of the ways, causes ‘no pain’ to the animal, you know what, let me sit of your neck and run a blade through your throat and let you slowly bleed to death, which comes after hours of torture and humiliation to the animal.

    Give me a break and get some perspective, ignorance oozes out of your pores.Recommend

  • Gulshad Ahmed

    What rubbish you wrote and I wasted my precious time in reading your meaningless write up. Sorry to say but I think you are mentally sick and lacks knowledge in this regard even being a secular.Recommend

  • ThePatriot


    Ofcourse this promotes violence. I don’t see how you can possibly say it doesn’t. There isn’t a Muslim country on the planet that is any decent shape. It’s barbaric (so is the entrie meat industry btw) and very outdated. People in those times didn’t know where the sun came up from or what germs were, and that’s not my opinion, that lies in historical data. To follow this then would atleast be forgiveable, to do the same rituals today is inexcusable and unforgiveable.

    You can have my tolerance (barely) but you can’t have my respect. that needs to be earned.Recommend

  • ThePatriot


    I know you are a religious fellow and don’t “believe” in science and “all them fancy book learnin’.” but it would benefit you to read a book once in a while. No branch of science claims vegetables feel pain, or pain that can atleast be recorded. they don’t have pain receptors to begin with. maybe you saw a tv show or something. The question isn’t settled, but as of now, there is no evidence indicating your claim.

    Another point is sentience, look it up, it’s an english word. Animals have it, including us. plants don’t. Recommend

  • Gohar

    Thats a shameful thinking!! if you don’t have information, please don’t write it Either!Recommend

  • Zain Hasan

    Its my third comment here, and I am defending Nadya since start of this post because she said something jisko kehtay hein kay dil kee baat kerdi.
    Anyways, I am amazed that more than half of the public is unable to understand the main idea of his post, if she had called that Barbaric (which is quiet right) it doesn’t mean she had called that Nobel prophet and that historic event, offcource that event and those Prophets are incomparable and their bravery and salivation is unmatchable but try to understand the subject of this post, here she is not talking about the validation of that sacrificial event, here she is talking about the way we celebrate it today. I know namaz is so mandatory for us but what if we pray without clothes? will it be that significant? and if someone calls that nudity will it be the nudity (God forbid) of namaz?
    We Muslims have proved that we don’t want to discuss or talk about our believes and religious conduct, that is another form of extremism, she gave her point of view and many of you called non-Muslim, rubbish and hypocirte.
    Pakistan isn’t the only country which celebrates Eid ul Adha, UAE, Saudi Arabia and other Asia Pacific countries do slaughter their animals on eid every year but they have designated areas for this event where you can go and slaughter your animal instead of insulting it on roads.

    I don’t know how you people can afford to see those ghatiya qasayis torturing innocent animals, tieing them again and again keep slitting their necks till the end point and they usually start skinning them before they die, its almost more than a torture for animal, you wouldn’t see such things in slaughter house cause people working there are professionals and they never feel fear for their victims.


  • punk-d

    I see the Sialkot lynch mob is online too.Recommend

  • Dia

    @Marium Kaludi & Vikas, both of you have explained your points very nicely. Cant agree more.. Recommend

  • Adil

    This is a sacrifice for Allah and the sunnah of his prophet. Yes it shouldn’t be done out on the streets because of the mess and hygiene issues it creates, but it is an order and MUST be followed.

    Liberalism has no bounds. We can tear apart all tenets and commandments of Islam. But what we forget is that we have to die one day, be buried in total darkness 6 feet beneath the surface and be answerable to Him for what we believed and did. The world would be a much better place if people kept this in mind.Recommend

  • Salim Karim

    Good article and a point that i have been arguing for some time. I dread this time of the year, Yes the only thing to look forward to is three straight days of extra paid leave time but that is all drowned by the smell of fresh blood and the sound of mourning animals that you are subjected to, and please not to mention the body parts lying on road sides. Its not right and I for one cannot believe it to be a sacrifice. How is buying a goat a week or two before, playing with it, feeding it and then butchering it a form of sacrifice in the name of Allah. On the other hand if you were to bring out your brand new 40inch LCD and smash it in the name of god i promise you you will feel the pain of sacrifice more than killing (or witnessing the killing of) an animal that you have no attachment to.
    The whole idea behind this festival is to prove your faith in god and to be willing to make a sacrifice for him as evidence of your faith, i’m no expert but somehow i fail to see the correlation of faith, sacrifice and (in most cases) a scrawny goat.
    I see others arguing that one shouldn’t eat meat if they hold this view, and i admit I’m one of those for who no meat = no meal. I also hold no special place in my heart for goats but i do believe that butchering goats should be left at meat shops. There is no need to subject children and others alike to the gore. Recommend