As the festival of Eid-Ul-Azha approaches, controversial hoardings allegedly put up by the 'People for the Ethical Treatment of Animal' (PETA) in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, are attracting criticism from Islamic clerics.
One such hoarding in Qaiserbagh crossing carries a huge picture of a goat and reads - ‘Mai Jeev Hoon, Maans Nahi. Hamare Prati Nazariya Badlen, Vegan Bane’ (I am a living being and not just meat. Change your view towards us and become a vegan). It carries a PETA logo at its corner.
After wide circulation of the hoardings' pictures on social media, Chairman of Islamic Centre of India, Maulana Khalid Rasheed Farangi Mahali, has written to police demanding for them to be taken down on grounds that they are hurtful to Muslim sentiments. PETA has not yet commented on the hoardings.
“On the occasion of Eid-Ul-Azha, there is a religious tradition of sacrificing goats, and such hoardings are hurting the sentiments of lakhs of Muslims," Maulana Mahali said.
He said the organisation has written a letter to the Commissioner of Police, Lucknow, asking him to take down the hoardings from the city as soon as possible. "It seems that these hoardings were deliberately put up in a mischievous attempt to hurt Muslim sentiments," he added.
Other Islamic clerics have also objected to the hoardings, saying they have been put up to "spoil the law and order situation in the state capital ahead of the festival of Eid-Ul-Azha."