Eid-ul-Azha Celebrations in Pakistan

Islamic Republic of Pakistan has a Muslim majority so all the religious festivals are celebrated here with fervor and enthusiasm. In the month of Zil Haj, the grand Muslim pilgrimage to the Kaaba in Makkah takes place. Eid-ul-Azha is celebrated on the Tenth day of this month.

In Pakistan even before the month of Zil Haj starts, we see livestock markets locally called Bakra Mandis pop up at designated places in major cities like Karachi, Islamabad, Lahore, Hyderabad and others. Different cities have huge markets, which sell goats, cows, and camels to name a few. Mostly men and children make plans and visit these markets to buy animals for sacrifice.

Children are specifically very enthusiastic in taking care of these animals feeding them, and becoming emotionally attached to them. Apart from that, families shop for their Eid clothes and shopping malls and markets are very busy.

On the night before the Eid day, popularly known as the ‘Chaand Raat’, many women and girls get henna patterns applied to their hands. Many families are out and about on Chaand Raat enjoying the food and some last minute shopping.

On the first day of Eid, after offering the Eid prayers, the animals are sacrificed and this continues till the second and third days depending on the availability of the butchers. The meat is distributed among the needy, the family members, and the neighbors and also among friends.

In many households sweet treats are cooked and there is a huge flow of guests for the coming three to four days. Apart from meeting family members and friends during the daytime, the most popular social gathering on this Eid is family barbeques.

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