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Beef price-fixing yes but where is the religious principle
July 20, 2019
The fixed price for beef for the upcoming Eid-ul-Adha is Rs132.50/kg.
This is the official and confirmed price for beef unveiled by the Minister of trade and commerce Hon Gungah on July 18.
The price for beef was well received by the Muslim community and many have taken to social media in droves to thank the government in place for the positive incentive taken by the concerned ministry.
Talking to the media, Minister Gungah declared the only importer of live ox/bull is Socovia Ltd.
However, Muslim clerics made it clear the festival of Eid-ul-Adha or Bakreid is solely for spiritual purpose warning against fraudulent practices asking the community to take appropriate precautions regarding the age of the animal to be slaughtered.
It is compulsory that the animal for slaughter has reached the age minimum of two or more than two years to be eligible for sacrifice.
Questions are now being raised by many as to how will the buyers of the animals check for the eligibility for slaughter? Will the company in question allow for the check.
So far, only a few volunteers, contacted by the buyers of the animals are able to check the animal age by proceeding through a dentition inspection.
If an animal is less than 2 years old, the sacrifice, known as << Qurbani >>, is void.
Hence, the main concern is to prevent the supplier from profiting without respecting the age criteria.
Many Muslims are appealing to the authorities for the suppliers to make transparent all the figures to ensure the demand is met for the Muslim community.
Should these figures (of the age of the animal) be kept undisclosed, it will raise suspicions and people will say the animals do not have the required age.
In popular opinion, the animal farm has no obligations to carry out verifications before delivery.
This will pave way for further frustrations on the monopoly of the beef industry by the sole supplier.
The recommendation of Muslims include the following:
—Presence of an officer from the Ministry of Agro-industry and an officer from the Ministry of Commerce and Consumer Affairs on the cattle farm to verify good weighing, age of the animal and check for any anomaly.
—Breaking the monopoly of a sole importer to develop the farming sector in Mauritius. A market survey must be done to ensure the demand is met for Eid ul Adha. In the past, the ministry advised the use of sheep/goat, but people do have a choice and should they opt for ox/bull, they should be getting the animal with the required age, else it would be completely useless to fix a standard price for Eid ul Adha when the animals are not fit for slaughter as per the religious demands.
—Encourage local farmers to raise animals with the government providing the necessary aid. Currently, one “local” animal costs Rs20 000 more than an imported animal and this is discouraging people from buying locally raised animals.
With proper incentives, the local farming sector can benefit and consumers as well.
The situation will now be followed by local volunteer groups and many are now concerned that cattle farm may not allow age check, due to no policy given by the government.