Although the government has earmarked some spots for slaughtering sacrificial animals during the upcoming Eid-ul-Azha to keep the city clean, the initiative seems to be ineffective as city dwellers are worried how they will carry the meat back home from the slaughtering places.
Talking to UNB, a good number of city dwellers said if all people throng a fixed place of a specific area then there will be an acute shortage of space to slaughter the animals and create a chaos as everybody will try to have their animals slaughtered first.
Although they hail the government decision as it will keep the city clean and pollution-free during the eid, they find the move impractical in Dhaka city’s context.
Those who have enough space in front of their houses, they can slaughter their animals there and dump the wastes of the sacrificial animals in the fixed spots so that the workers of city corporations can collect those easily, they added.
At a meeting on August 28, the government earmarked spots in the capital and the port city of Chittagong for slaughtering animals during the Eid-ul-Azha to check pollution caused by waste and leftovers of sacrificial animals.
The residents of Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) can slaughter animals at 324 points while 208 points have been set aside for the dwellers of Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC).
Jahangir Hossain, a resident of Mirpur area, said, “I’ve enough space on the basement of my apartment to slaughter sacrificial animals. The blood of animals will go down the sewerage line if we dump the waste at the specific places. Besides, the city corporation garbage vehicles collect wastes from there. Then why should I go the fixed spot to slaughter animal?”
“The decision is not practical in Bangladesh context as we have got huge population but limited space. If a large number of people gather in a specific place then a chaotic situation might be created,” he added.
Abdul Hamid, a resident of Jatrabari area, said, “The designated slaughtering spot is far away from my home. So, I’ll face problem to carry back the meat from the slaughtering spot as there is a transport crisis on the eid day. I don’t have my own vehicle to carry it. So, I’m not interested to slaughter my sacrificial animal at the designated place. I will slaughter it in front of my home.”
Habibur Rahman of Malibagh area said, “It’s a good initiative for waste management. But, I’ll face difficulty in the transportation of meat. Moreover, there will be problem if the city corporations don’t provide logistics in this regard. So I will observe the situation this year and will go from the next year if everything goes accordingly.”
Akbar Hossain of Mohammadpur area said “I think this is a good initiative. It should have been taken many years back. Slaughtering cattle here and there is an environmental issue. People should respect the decision in their own interest.”
When contacted, Local Government and Rural Development (LGRD) Secretary Abdul Malek said, “We have taken the step for the first time to keep the city neat and clean. If people slaughter sacrificial animals in a scattered manner, it takes too much time to remove the wastes. And thus the city gets polluted.”
In reply to a question, he said, “The houses of those are far away from the spots are unlikely to go to the fixed place. But I’ll request them to slaughter animals in an open space nearby their houses so that the garbage can be collected easily. In course of time people will get habituated to it. And then will go to the designated spots willingly.”
Chief Executive Officer of Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) BM Enamul Haque said there will be imams and butchers in every spot for slaughtering animals.
“It will take time as there will be huge pressure of animals to be slaughtered in the fixed spots. I think people will accept the delay,” he added.
As the eid approaches fast, DNCC Mayor Annisul Huq, in his facebook page, urged all the city dwellers to slaughter their sacrificial animals in the fixed places.
“DNCC for the first time has arranged more than 200 spots across the corporation for slaughtering sacrificial animals. Let’s come and complete the qurbani in the nearest fixed place instead of on the streets or in the parking place and help keep the city clean. If we all remain aware about it, it is possible to keep the city clean and beautiful during this qurbani,” his facebook status reads.