Graphic image warning: A cow was lifted by a crane in Karachi and it fell to the ground from the second floor. Image Credit: Twitter

A video of a cow being taken for sacrifice, carried by a crane and falling from the second floor of a house in the city of Karachi, in Pakistan, has gone viral and sparked a debate about animal cruelty online.

As Pakistan celebrated Eid Al Adha on Saturday, August 2, a video of a cow slipping and falling to the ground emerged on social media, angering netizens.

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In the video, the cow can be seen being lifted from the top of the two-storied building when it loses balance and falls to the ground between a crowd of spectators, many of whom are seen filming the incident.

Social media users have criticised the “irresponsible” act, calling it animal cruelty while some defended it by blaming it on the crane management that did not tie the animal properly.

According to some social media posts, the cow that fell from the crane belonged to the family for two years.

Twitter user @sulemanrazauk wrote: “This particular cow was brought up and looked after by the family for almost two years on top floor of their house in Pakistan, I fail to understand why they chose to bring it down via crane machine for qurbani (sacrifice) on Eid day and why could not they do it on the same floor. #ShareToAware.”

Taking to Twitter, Pakistani actress Ushna Shah, @ushnashah, also reacted to the video: “Just saw a video of a terrorised cow being hung very high in the air on a crane and then dropped on the street to be killed. This is qurbani? Is there no prison for such monsters? I’m so sick of this Pakistan. What’s wrong with so many people here.”

Some responded to Shah’s post calling it a mere “accident”.

Tweep @ehsanah96184578 posted: “It fell not dropped. They didn’t secure it well. It was an accident. It has been done in Karachi since ages. Someone fed this cow to be ready for Eid. Don’t equate everything to animal cruelty. It was an accident.”

Another Twitter user, @BlunderWoman_, had similar thoughts: “I think it was a mistake not an abuse. Someone was being... My friend did her mehndi (wedding celebration) entrance through [a] crane with her groom. These people were IDK (I don’t know) showing off or whatever but I think they did not mean this to happen. That's just my opinion.”

While some suggested that keeping animals on rooftops is a common practice in Pakistan.

A Twitter user @TheAnthonian wrote: “I think it is a common practice in Karachi that animals are kept at rooftop and brought down for qurbani through crane. Apparently it looks like that the operator did not secure the cow properly leading to this accident. Again just an opinion.”

While some social media posts suggest that the cow died after falling to the ground, the details are unclear.