Fisheries and Livestock Minister SM Rezaul Karim said that over one crore cattle are ready in the country for Qurbani (sacrifice) during the Eid-ul-Azha this year.
"Ill or sick animals with diseases will not be allowed to enter the sacrificial animal market and medical teams will be active in each market," the Minister told UNB in an online interview.
Asked about the possibility of the sick animal entering the market, the Minister said "The authorities will strictly monitor that and the medical team will not allow owners to take their ill animals into the market."
"There's a religious norm as well that sacrificing a sick animal is not legal and the sacrifice means nothing in that case," he said adding that during this Covid-19 pandemic, we won't let people get sick by consuming meat of sick animals.
Minister kept on saying that on every spot from city to rural area, veterinary doctors will be there and check each and every animal's health status.
Asked about the number of medical teams in the capital, the Minister said "the number is not yet fixed, but medical teams will be in every animal market."
Besides, veterinary surgeons of upazila level and their assistants in field level will go to every sacrificial animal market, he said.
If any cattle farm owner desires to get a certificate for their animal, it will be provided, said the Minister, adding that "We don't want any sacrifice to be conducted with sick animals."
UNB wanted to know from the Livestock Minister SM Rezaul Karim, if he has taken any steps to stop entry of harmful steroid and hormonal medicine for animals through borders before the ensuing Eid-ul-Azha.
To that question, the Minister said "Border security is not under my Ministry."
"We urged the authorities concerned to stop animal entry from India, Myanmar or any country as sufficient numbers of animals are being produced here in Bangladesh," he added.
The Home Ministry and Border Guard Bangladesh (BGB) to be vigilant in this regard, he said adding that Livestock offices in bordering areas were also asked to be alert as no animal can enter Bangladesh illegally.
Livestock Minister also urged all to inform BGB, Police, Local Administration if they have any information about sacrificial animal entry through borders. Actions will be taken, he said.
Answering a question about the Livestock Ministry's step to stop rawhide smuggling, the Minister said BGB will supervise this issue.
"We don't want a single rawhide going out through the border," he said.
The Commerce Ministry will see if it is necessary to export rawhide or not, but we want fare price for it and let it not be spoiled, Karim said.
Asked whether the Covid-19 pandemic would reduce the number of sacrifices, the Minister said "We have 1 crore sacrificial animals for this year's Qurbani."
Usually some family sacrifices five to six animals during Eid-ul-Azha, said the Minister adding that "We fear that they will not do that this year."
Meanwhile, the low-income families have been struggling to recover the financial loss of Covid-19 pandemic, cyclone Amphan and Bulbul, he said.
"I think that some will not sacrifice animals if they are incapable of, and middle-income people also may not participate in Qurbani this year," the Minister said.
I guess the number of sacrifices will come down this year in comparison with the previous year, he said however, "farmers are ready to provide one crore sacrificial animals."