Eid al-Adha 2013
Muslims pray during Eid el-Kebir at a mosque in Koumassi, in the Ivorian capital Abidjan, October 15, 2013. [Reuters]

Muslims across the world on Wednesday celebrated Eid al-Adha, the festival of sacrifice, by offering prayers and sacrifices of animals.

Eid al-Adha is celebrated on the 10th day of Dhu al-Hijjah, the 12th and final month of the Islamic calendar, and lasts for four days. Dhu al-Hijjah is a sacred month which marks the end of the year.

Eid al-Adha and Eid al-Fitr are two feast festivals which are celebrated widely by Muslims across the world.

Eid al-Fitr, which is the festival of fast-breaking, is connected only with sacred timings, while Eid al-Adha is associated with sacred timings and sacred places like Arafat, Mina, Muzdalifah and Makkah, according to the Fiqh Council of North America.

In most Islamic countries the festival was celebrated on 15 October. But in India, it is being celebrated a day later.

President Pranab Mukherjee, Vice President Mohammad Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh wished people on the occasion of Eid.

"It is an occasion to remind ourselves of the path of selfless sacrifice and forgiveness followed by Hazrat Ibrahim and to emulate the same," President Mukherjee said in his message.

Eid al-Adha is also called Bakr Eid. It celebrates the willingness of Prophet Ibrahim to sacrifice his only son, Ishmael, as an act of obedience to god.

During the festival, Muslims slaughter animals - mainly cows, goats, sheep and camels, to honour the sacrifice made by Ibrahim and pay him a tribute.

But this year in India, leading Islamic seminary Darul Uloom Deoband has urged Muslims not to sacrifice cows during Eid, to respect Hindu sentiment, The Times of India reported.

Check out the videos and photos of Eid al-Adha celebrations from around the world.

                                   

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Muslims pray during Eid el-Kebir at a mosque in Koumassi, in the Ivorian capital Abidjan, October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslims pray during Eid el-Kebir at a mosque in Koumassi, in the Ivorian capital Abidjan, October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslims pray during Eid el-Kebir at a mosque in Koumassi, in the Ivorian capital Abidjan, October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslims pray during Eid el-Kebir at a mosque in Koumassi, in the Ivorian capital Abidjan, October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslims pray during Eid al-Adha in Cairo [Reuters]
Muslims pray during Eid al-Adha in Cairo [Reuters]
People ride horses as they celebrate the first day of the Eid al-Adha feast near the Saudi city of Tabuk [Reuters]
People ride horses as they celebrate the first day of the Eid al-Adha feast near the Saudi city of Tabuk [Reuters]
A man washes away blood after killing a ram to mark celebrations for Eid al-Adha in Lagos [Reuters]
A man washes away blood after killing a ram to mark celebrations for Eid al-Adha in Lagos [Reuters]
A boy sits in a mosque during Eid al-Adha celebrations in Kunming, Yunnan province October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
A boy sits in a mosque during Eid al-Adha celebrations in Kunming, Yunnan province October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslim pilgrims arrive to cast seven pebbles at a pillar that symbolizes Satan during the annual haj pilgrimage, on the first day of Eid al-Adha in Mina, near the holy city of Mecca October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslim pilgrims arrive to cast seven pebbles at a pillar that symbolizes Satan during the annual haj pilgrimage, on the first day of Eid al-Adha in Mina, near the holy city of Mecca October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslim pilgrims arrive to cast seven pebbles at a pillar that symbolizes Satan during the annual haj pilgrimage, on the first day of Eid al-Adha in Mina, near the holy city of Mecca October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslim pilgrims arrive to cast seven pebbles at a pillar that symbolizes Satan during the annual haj pilgrimage, on the first day of Eid al-Adha in Mina, near the holy city of Mecca October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
A Kosovar man prays at his son's grave in the martyr's cemetery after morning prayers on Eid Al-Adha in the village of Racak, southwest of capital Prishtina October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
A Kosovar man prays at his son's grave in the martyr's cemetery after morning prayers on Eid Al-Adha in the village of Racak, southwest of capital Prishtina October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
A sheep is seen near Muslims praying during Eid al-Adha in Tunis October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
A sheep is seen near Muslims praying during Eid al-Adha in Tunis October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
A boy prays during Eid al-Adha in Tunis October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
A boy prays during Eid al-Adha in Tunis October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslims attend Eid al-Adha prayers at Martyrs' Square in Tripoli October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Muslims attend Eid al-Adha prayers at Martyrs' Square in Tripoli October 15, 2013. [Reuters]
Members of the Muslim Brotherhood and supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mursi shout slogans against the military and interior ministry after Eid al-Adha prayers in Cairo [Reuters]c
Members of the Muslim Brotherhood and supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mursi shout slogans against the military and interior ministry after Eid al-Adha prayers in Cairo [Reuters]c
Nepali Muslims arrive for the mass prayer during the Eid al-Adha celebrations at the Kashmiri Takiya Jame mosque in Kathmandu [Reuters]
Nepali Muslims arrive for the mass prayer during the Eid al-Adha celebrations at the Kashmiri Takiya Jame mosque in Kathmandu [Reuters]