Although many districts are bracing for a shortage of sacrificial animals ahead of the Eid-ul-Azha due to the worsening Covid-19 situation in the country, Faridpur is an exception.
Livestock farmers are now busy nurturing cattle in more than 5,000 cattle farms in nine upazilas of the district ahead of Eid-ul-Azha, the second largest festival of Muslims when over one crore cattle are sacrificed across the country.
Officials at district Livestock Department said more than 50,000 sacrificial animals are ready in the district for the Eid-ul-Azha.
They are expecting to supply those to other districts after fulfilling local demand, they said.
The farmers of the district told UNB that there is no need to bring sacrificial animals from the other side of the border keeping in mind the Covid-19 situation, as they are confident that the homegrown cattle would be enough to meet the demand.
They also demanded the authorities concerned take steps to halt smuggling of cattle from India to ensure fair prices for local farmers.
Eid-ul-Azha, the festival of sacrifice, is likely to be celebrated across the country in late July for the second consecutive year under the shadow of a surging Covid-19 pandemic.
Keeping the status quo in mind, relevant authorities have taken steps to shift the major part of animal sales online.
Faridpur District Animal Resources Officer. Nurullah Md. Ahsan said,"We have taken initiative to sell sacrificial animals online in every upazila of the district this year. Farmers are posting pictures of their cattle on dedicated facebook pages and online spaces alongside their weight and value.”
He said at least 48,349 cattle if not more have been prepared for sale in the coming Eid despite the district having a demand of only 36,000.
Syed Zahurul Alam, owner of Syed Shah Ali Baghdadi, a large farm in Gerda area of Faridpur Sadar Upazila, said his farm has 60 large and medium-sized cows. He said that he has bought improved breeds of young cows and made them bigger for the sacrificial market.
He also added that they did not use any harmful chemicals for fattening their cattle this year.
“Many have been employed in my farm,” the proud owner said.
Abrar Nowsher, owner of Tahera Agro in the same area, said 50 large cows have been prepared for the sacrificial market on his farm.
"We have raised the animals through proper care throughout the year and hopefully we will get a good price," he said.