By Tin Soe

Kutupalong, Bangladesh: Eid-ul-Azha or the 'Festival of Sacrifice,' one of the second-largest religious festival of the Muslims, was celebrated in Arakan( Burma) and Bangladesh including by Arakanese Rohingya living in the refugee camp in Cox’s Bazaar on November 28, said Rafique, a member of refugee committee from the unregistered camp.

Eid day, began with offering Eid prayers by millions of Arakanese Rohingya at mosques and eidgahs throughout Arakan and Bangladesh border seeking peace and prosperity for the nation. On the holy occasion, devotees offered Eid prayers and sacrificed animals. They also shared the feast of sacrificial meat with their relatives and neighbours and distributed those among poor people.

But, Arakanese Rohingya living in the unregistered refugee camp are still waiting distribution of meat from community organizations and Muslims NGOs, the committee member said.

The unregistered refugee camp has more than 6300 Arakanese Rohingya families where there are more than 30,000 refugees.

The camp committee said they received only seven cows and 12 goats from a community organization the Poor Aid this year and no other help came to their camp. They only distributed the meat to 300 families.

“We received aid last year from a NGO of Turkey, but this year we did not.  But, we heard that these NGO gave 30 cows to the Lada camp which is getting support from EU and the Poor Aid also gave them six cows and 10 goats. Also another community organization, RSO distributed 25 cows, where only 12,000 refugees live in the camp,” said Kamal, another refugee committee member.

“We called on our Muslim brothers all over the world to help us in the Eid festival with whatever they can to our camp to celebrate Eid with our families,” said Mohamed Hakim, an old refugee from the camp.

“I hoped this year we will get meat in the Eid festival and enjoy with our families members, but our hopes were dashed after getting only one community organization’s help,” said  Amina Begum, a mother of four children.

Eid-ul-Azha is celebrated on the tenth of Dhul-Hijja through sacrifices and prayers in memory of the sacrifice of the Prophets Ibrahim Khalilullah and Ismail Zabihullah (peace be upon them), said Mohamed Ismil, religious leader from Cox’s Bazar  

Eid-ul-Azha brings for the Muslims divine blessing, an occasion not only to enjoy but also to receive Allah's Mercy and reward through sacrifice and benevolence, patience and constancy, he said.

As we prepare to celebrate Eid-ul-Azha, we are reminded once again of the purity which comes of an observance of religious duties, he added.

For on Eid-ul-Azha, we do not simply sacrifice animals as a matter of routine; we bring into that sacrifice a careful recalling of the spirit which must go into it, he explained about the festival.

This observance of religious tradition brings with it the cardinal lesson of faith being a constant remembrance of the munificence which comes our way from the Creator of the universe. And because of that munificence, the responsibility devolves on us to put ourselves in relation to our neighbours, our families, indeed to everyone in order for us to understand, the sufferings and the various compulsions that people less fortunate than we are often victim of, the religious leader added.

Our priorities on Eid-ul-Azha are, therefore, clear: on this noble occasion, it is for us to bear in mind the welfare, or the need for it, of others. And within that category of people come the poor, the destitute and the desperate. Eid-ul-Azha loses meaning when these men and women are forgotten or ignored he more added.