Make cow national animal, increase punishment for slaughter to life imprisonment: Rajasthan HC

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CowsThe Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday recommended that the Centre make cow the national animal, and recommended life imprisonment for cow slaughter.

The suggestion from the high court comes after Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, and now Tripura raised issues over the ban on cow slaughter, saying it was unconstitutional.

Several leaders, including Mamata Banerjee had raised issues over the law to ban slaughter. In a press conference in Kolkata, West Bengal CM said that the Centre’s move is unconstitutional. She said that West Bengal will neither accept it nor are they bound by it. Mamata said it is a move by Modi government to demoralize and destroy the federal structure of the county. She branded it as direct encroachment to federal structure. Several groups in Tamil Nadu and Kerala even held beef festivals to protest the ban,

The Madras High Court on Tuesday had even stayed the order to ban slaughter by four weeks, even as the Centre said they will look at revising the law.

Earlier, Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan said that he will discuss the issue with opposition party leader and summon a special session of assembly to discuss the issue

Vijayan had even written to the PMO expressing concern over the Centre’s plan to impose restrictions on cattle trade, which he said would have serious impact on the livelihoods of millions of Indians.

“It may be noted that the notification issued by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change regarding the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules, 2017 mandates that cattle can be traded only by those who have valid documentation that the cattle will be used only for agricultural purposes. Of the millions of farmers in our country, only a miniscule number of them have documentation to prove that they are engaged in agriculture. Therefore, it would be extremely difficult for the vast majority of our farmers to legally procure draught animals used for agriculture and other domestic purposes,” Vijayan wrote.

Reminding the Centre of meat being the primary source of protein for millions of poor Indians, Vijayan added, “Such restrictions being imposed on the eve of Ramzan, would certainly appear to certain communities of our country as a direct attack on them. People of all faiths consume meat in our country, not just the minorities. Once the prohibition comes into effect, it will not only deprive them of adequate nutrition, but also prevent the availability of raw material for the leather industry.”

Vijayan also requested the PMO to intervene in this matter and repeal the newly imposed restrictions.