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Bakrid / Idul Zuha

Idul Zuha 2017 and 2018

Idul Zuha, or the Feast of Sacrifice, is an Islamic holiday that is celebrated in India and other areas of the world with large Muslim populations.

YearDateDayHolidayStates
20171 SepFriIdul ZuhaPY
2 SepSatIdul ZuhaNational except DD, PY & SK
3 SepSunIdul Zuha HolidayJK
201822 AugWedIdul ZuhaNational except DD, PY & SK
23 AugThuIdul Zuha HolidayJK

Since the holiday is based on the Islamic calendar, it is not celebrated on the same date each year. This holiday honours the sacrifice of Prophet Ibrahim when Allah ordered him to sacrifice his son, Ismail. This important festival in India is a day of reverence and respect. It is also an excellent opportunity for Indian Muslims to enjoy a day off from work and to bond with their friends and family members.

Ibrahim, or Abraham, is known as the founder of the world’s largest religions. The Abrahamic religions include Islam, Christianity, and Judaism. In his youth, Ibrahim rejected the idols that were worshipped in his town. At one point, Ibrahim even destroyed the statues of these idols. After this event, the townspeople of his town attempted to burn Ibrahim for his crimes. After the pyre burned out, they discovered that Ibrahim was unaffected by the flames. Allah had protected Ibrahim to reward him for his rejection of polytheism. After many years, Ibrahim married a woman named Sarah. They lived together for a long time and had a single child together. This child was Ismail.

To test Ibrahim’s obedience, Allah ordered Ibrahim to sacrifice Ismail. At first, Ibrahim believed this demand to be a test, so he ignored the demand. Ibrahim eventually realized that this demand was truly the word of Allah. Soon after this, Ibrahim brought Ismail to the summit of Mount Arafat. Filled with grief and hesitation, Ibrahim tethered Ismail to an altar. Ibrahim closed his eyes as he plunged a dagger into the sacrifice. Upon opening his eyes, a dead ram was on the altar in Ismail’s place. Ibrahim was initially very shocked and thought that he would be punished by Allah for not sacrificing his only son. Allah reassured Ibrahim that he appreciated Ibrahim’s loyalty and that he could keep Ismail. Ibrahim was extremely grateful, so he committed the remainder of his life to serving Allah. The Feast of Sacrifice honours the actions and sacrifices of Ibrahim in this story.

Activities

  • Sacrifices on Idul Zuha
    One of the most famous activities of the Festival of Sacrifice is the sacrifice of a domestic animal. Some of the most commonly sacrificed animals are camels, sheep and goats. The act of sacrificing an animal is also known as qurbani. During this festival, a portion of the sacrificed animal is kept for a feast and the remaining meat is distributed to homeless and poor people. Since every Muslim family is expected to sacrifice an animal and give charity during Idul Zuha, everyone is well-fed on this holiday.
  • Prayers
    Several special prayers, or dua, are recited at certain times of Idul Zuha. One of the most important prayers is recited before the sacrifice of an animal. It is believed that the prayers of the Feast of Sacrifice bring peace and prosperity.
  • Food
    The food options of this holiday are quite different from the cuisine of other Muslim nations. This is because the traditional Muslim foods are fused with the spices and herbs of India and other areas of East Asia. This branch of cuisine is known as muglai. Biryani is a popular muglai dish – it consists of rice, various spices, dried fruit and meat. Muglai lamb is also a favourite festival food during Idul Zuha.
  • Worship Services
    Public worship services are an important part of Idul Zuha. One of the largest Islamic masses occurs at Taj Mahal. At this location, thousands of Muslims gather to pray to Allah for peace, prosperity, and good fortune.
  • Gifts
    It is common for Muslims to give gifts to their friends and family members during the Festival of Sacrifice.

Idul Zuha is a major Islamic holiday that allows Indian Muslims to spend time with their family members and honour the sacrifices of Ibrahim.