Beef is Halal for Muslims and no force on earth can stop us from cow-slaughter: Geelani
'Sacrifice animals on Eid according to true Islamic spirit'
Ahmed Ali Fayyaz
SRINAGAR, Sep 23: Even as many of the BJP leaders and senior government officials were heard claiming in Jammu on Wednesday that the Hurriyat hardliner had been "tamed" and that he would appeal Muslims not to sacrifice bovine animals on Eid-ul-Azha, Syed Ali Shah Geelani asserted that beef was Halal for Muslims and no force on earth could stop them from the practice of cow-slaughter.
Those celebrating Geelani's statement and claiming that it would defuse a potential crisis include Jammu's Divisional Commissioner Pawan Kotwal and several Deputy Commissioners. Sources said that many of the DCs and SSPs heaved a sigh of relief over whispers that Geelani had agreed to appeal Muslims not to sacrifice cows on the festival.
However, when Geelani's much speculated statement came out, separatrly from his organisation Tehreek-e-Hurriyat and his faction of the Hurriyat Conference, it contained nothing of what the BJP leaders and government officials had spread through their whispers and telephonic conversations.
"Allah has made beef Halal for us and no force on earth can make it proscribed for us or stop us from its consumption", Geelani said in the statement issued in Urdu. He, however, advised Muslims that the sacrifice of animals must be only to pratice a Sunnat and in no way aimed at hurting the sentiments of the followers of any religion.
"This (sacrifice of animals) is our religious dogma which we have been practicing since long and will continue to practice in future", Geelani added. He implored the Muslims of Jammu and Kashmir to "adhere to decency and spirit of Sunnat" while making such sacrifices to please the Almighty.
"Geelani Sahab expressed his anguish and deep concern over the reports that the court's recent controversial order on stopping cow-slaughter has caused tension and vitiated the atmosphere in Jammu province. Some insane elements are attempting to foment communal tension and drive a wedge between Muslims and Hindus with their conspiracies", said the statement. Geelani, it added, made an appeal to the Hindus "to be aware of the machinations of Shiv Sena and other Sangh Parivar outfits" and maintain communal harmony and brotherhood at any cost.
"We don't do cow-slaughter for hostility (of the Hindus). Nor do we intend to hurt their sentiments. We do it for it is a religious obligation for us", Geelani asserted. "However, it should be strictly according to the religious prescription and in no way turned into a means to provoke others and hurt their sentiments", Geelani said while avoiding to be specific where the cow-slaughter should happen around this Eid or not.