Shillong, Oct 16 (IANS) Eid-ul-Azha was celebrated Wednesday with religious fervour and gaiety across Meghalaya, a predominantly Christian state.
Thousands of men and children clad in new attire and wearing skull caps offered Namaz-e-Eid in Eidgahs or open grounds and mosques in Shillong, Dawki, Nongpoh, Lad Rymbai, Byrnihat and Garo Hills region.
The biggest congregation here was held at Laban Eidgah, where over 7,000 devout Muslims offered prayers.
After the prayers, Muslims sacrificed goats and other "halal" animals to commemorate the great sacrifice made by Prophet Ibrahim and urged people to follow his teachings and the Holy Quran.
Also known as Bakr Eid or Eid-e-Qurban, it is the second major festival of Muslims.
The meat of the sacrificed animals is distributed among neighbours, relatives and the poor.
Muslims also exchanged greetings with relatives and friends and treated the visitors to their homes with sweet dishes.
Meghalaya Governor K.K. Paul and Chief Minister Mukul Sangma greeted the people of the state on the occasion.
Paul hoped "the festival will bring peace, prosperity and harmony in the state".
Extending his greetings, Chief Minister Sangma said: "Eid-ul-Zuha celebrates the spirit of submission to the will of God and may this festival remind us of the importance of charity and sacrifice and also to reaffirm our resolve to strengthen the bond of peace and brotherhood and prosperity."
Muslims constitute four percent of the nearly three million population of Meghalaya.