ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Sunday felicitated the nation on Eid Al-Adha, urging people to observe coronavirus guidelines and ensure cleanliness on the occasion.
Pakistanis are celebrating Eid Al-Adha today, on Sunday, with traditional fervor in commemoration of the great sacrifice of Prophet Ibrahim (Peace Be Upon Him) and his son. However, the South Asian country has witnessed a spike in the number of coronavirus infections in recent weeks, reporting seven deaths and 732 new infections in the last 24 hours.
In its guidelines for Eid Al-Adha, the country’s main pandemic response body, the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC), also urged people to wear masks and observe social distancing.
PM Sharif urged people to follow standard operating procedures (SOPs) against the virus for the safety and well-being of their loved ones.
“I will appeal to the nation on Eid Al-Adha to take special care of SOPs so that you and your loved ones remain safe from this fatal disease,” the prime minister said on Twitter.
“Besides this, ensure cleanliness after the sacrifice [of animals]. It is a responsibility of us all to keep the beloved Pakistan neat and clean.”
The Eid day dawned with special prayers in mosques for the progress, prosperity and security of Pakistan and the Muslim Ummah, followed by Eid congregations at mosques, Eidgahs and open places in all cities, towns and villages across the country.
Religious scholars, in their sermons, highlighted the philosophy of the great sacrifice offered by Prophet Ibrahim (PBUH). To commemorate it, Muslims are offering sacrifice of animals.
President Arif Alvi offered Eid prayers in the southern port city of Karachi, while PM Sharif offered the prayers in his hometown of Jati Umra near the eastern city of Lahore.
“I would like to felicitate the entire Pakistani nation and the Islamic world on the auspicious and joyous occasion of Eid-ul-Azha. Eid-ul-Azha reminds us of the submission and obedience of Hazrat Ibrahim (A.S) and Hazrat Ismail (A.S) before the command of Allah Almighty,” President Alvi said in his message on Eid.
He said there was a dire need to effectively utilize this spirit of sacrifice as the country faces economic challenges.
“The entire Pakistani nation must reaffirm that instead of pursuing self-interest, greed, and avarice, we would inculcate the spirit of brotherhood, selflessness, love and empathy to help the needy and destitute around us so that we may emerge as a strong nation in these testing times,” the president said.
In his message on Eid, PM Sharif said this holy day is a message of sacrifice and complete submission to Allah Almighty. He urged the masses to particularly focus on helping out their poor brothers and sisters in these difficult times.
“Include the needy people around you in Eid festivities and do not forget the ones affected by floods and rains,” PM Sharif said. “It is our duty to help them and share their sorrow in this difficult hour.”
Torrential monsoon rains have wreaked havoc in parts of Pakistan in the last few weeks, with at least 116 people killed so far and hundreds of houses damaged by the downpours. Nearly half the deaths took place in the country’s southern Sindh province and impoverished Balochistan province in the southwest.
The federal and provincial governments have also chalked out elaborate security plans across the country to ward off any untoward incidents on the occasion of Eid.
Civic authorities have also made special arrangements for the disposal of offals and animal waste during the Eid holiday.