The Bangladeshi brand of secularism finds its truest and most triumphant expression in the almost determined and vigorous celebration of all it religious festivals - irrespective of the faith and size of its following.
Eid-ul-Azha, one of the two most important festivals in the Muslim faith that is now followed by upwards of 90 percent of Bangladeshis, will be celebrated across the country on Saturday.
Well-off Muslims will sacrifice animals commemorating Hazrat Ibrahim's devotion to Allah as illustrated by his readiness to give up his beloved son Hazrat Ismail.
All the necessary preparations for holding Eid congregations and celebrations have been completed across the country, including capital Dhaka and Sholakia in Kishoreganj.
Hundreds of thousands of Muslims will offer prayers there seeking divine blessings, peace and progress for the country.
The main congregation of Eid-ul-Azha will be held at the National Eidgah at 8am on Saturday.
President Abdul Hamid offered Eid-ul-Fitr prayers along with hundreds of people from all walks of life at the National Eidgah.
Cabinet members, judges of the Supreme Court, members of parliament, senior political leaders and high civil and military officials also offered prayers at the main Eid congregation.
Besides, a total of five Eid congregations will be held at Baitul Mukarram National Mosque, according to a press release issued by the Islamic Foundation. The jamaats will be held at 7am, 8am, 9am, 10am and 10:45am, the release added.
A four-tier security system was in place at the National Eidgah in the capital. Devotees were urged not to bring anything other than prayer mats to the eidgah.
The main city streets and road islands have been decorated with the national flags and banners inscribed with ‘Eid Mubarak’ in Bangla and Arabic.
Special diet is served in hospitals, jails, government orphanages, centres for persons with disabilities, shelter homes and vagrant and destitute welfare centres.
State-run Bangladesh Television, Bangladesh Betar and private TV channels are airing special programmes on the occasion.
On the auspicious occasion of Eid-ul-Azha, President Md Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina greeted the Muslim Ummah including country people in their separate messages on Thursday.
In his message, the President said, the exemplary love and sacrifice of Prophet Hazrat Ismail (As) for Allah should be reflected in our personal and social life and only then peace and amity can be established, said a press release.
Terming Bangladesh as an example of communal harmony, Abdul Hamid urged everyone through his message to stay alert so that no one can create chaos by giving misinterpretation of religion.
In another message, Prime Minister said, every year, the Muslims establish the message of sympathy and equality by distributing meat of sacrificed animals among the poor and relatives.
“Eid teaches about peace, sympathy, sacrifice and friendship”, she said in her message urging the countrymen to create a peaceful Bangladesh through participating in public welfare activities.
Sholakia wants to regain luster
In Kishoreganj, all necessary preparations have been completed to hold the country’s largest and its 190th eid congregation at Sholakia Eidgah in the district as Eid-ul-Azha will be celebrated in the country on Saturday.
Hafez Maulana Hefzur Rahman, Imam of Markaz Mosque of the district town, is expected to lead the eid congregation to be held at 9 am.
Md Anwar Hossain Khan, Superintendent of Kishoreganj District Police said three-tier security arrangement will be in place around the Eidgah to ensure security of devotees following the terrorist attack on the day of Eid-ul-Fitr on July 7 of last year.
Besides, two special trains will operate on Bhairab-Kishoreganj and Kishoreganj-Mymensingh routes to facilitate the movement of Sholakia-bound Muslim devotees.
Azimuddin Biswas, president of Sholakia Eidgah Managing Committee and deputy commissioner of the district, said, “We’ve taken all preparations for the 190th eid congregation giving importance to security.
At least four people, including two police members, were killed and 10-15 others injured in a bomb explosion followed by a volley of gunfire near the country’s largest Eid congregation at Sholakia Eidgah in Sadar upazila on July 7 of last year.
In Rajshahi, The main congregation of Eid-ul-Azha will be held at Hazrat Shah Mukhdum Central Eidgah of the city at 8am.
In Chittagong, the main eid jamaat will be held at Jamiatul Falah national eidgah in the city at 8am.
At least 259 eid congregations will be held in the city on the management by Chittagong City Corporation and Eid Jamaat Committee.
Local Members of Parliaments City Mayor, politician, businessmen and people from all corner of the society will perform their eid prayer.
Besides at least 25 Eid congregations will be held in the city.
In Sylhet, The main Jammat of of Eid-ul-Azha will be held at Shahi Eidgah at 8:30 am, Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith among others will pray their eid prayer at the eidgah of the city.
Besides the eid congregations will be held at Hazrat Shahjalal (RA) Mazar Sharif premises at 8am Hazrat Shah Paran (RA) Mazar Sharif premises at 8:30am.
In Barishal, The main congregation of Eid-ul-Azha will be held at Central Hemayet Uddin Eidgah Maidan of the city at 8am.
In Khulna, main Eid congregation will be held Khulna Circuit House Eidgah Maidan at 8am by the management of Khulna City Corporation.
Besides, Eid Jammat will be held Town Jame-Mosjid at 9am and Khalispur Eidgah Maidan at 8am. Total 300 eid congregations will be held in the city.