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BJP Govt Dilutes Cattle Trade Laws, Modifies Key Clauses

10 April 2018

INDIA - In a big step taken in amending the existing cattle trade rules, the Narendra Modi-led central government scrapped the clause which asked for a certification that the 'animal brought to the market for sale is not for slaughter'.

NewsX reports that the new rules heavily stress on the prohibited practices like branding, castration and nose cutting of animals. At least four other clauses on how animals should be kept, like adequate space and other rules on penning and caging, in a market have been removed.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Central government changed the rules in Prevention of Cruelty to Animals by removing the term ‘slaughter’ from it. The new rules now deal with prevention of cruelty to animals in the market.

The previous rules issued by the government just stated a ban on the sale of cattle for slaughter. When the Centre issued the notification on May 23 2017, banning the sale of cattle for slaughter, it stirred massive political storm and protests from both traders and consumers.

According to reports, the ministry of environment, forest, and climate change removed the word slaughter from draft rules and concised the existing rules to almost half. In the new notification called Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Animal Market Rules, only one line has been retained from the 2017’s notification i.e. 'no unfit animal or young animal shall be sold in an animal market'.

In another big step taken in amending the rules, the Narendra Modi-led central government scrapped the clause which asked for a certification that the 'animal brought to the market for sale is not for slaughter'.

The new rules heavily stress on the prohibited practices like branding, castration and nose cutting of animals. At least four other clauses on how animals should be kept, like adequate space and other rules on penning and caging, in a market have been removed.

After the new rules were notified by the government, lawyer N Jayasimha, who helped in framing the previous rules, said, "Checks introduced in the 2017 rules on animal cruelty have been watered down. The ministry had to address the clauses that had been stayed by the Supreme Court. But they have completely watered down the entire set of rules. There is no mention of inter-state trade of cattle.

"One of the main reasons for framing 2017 rules was the Supreme Court order to prevent illegal trade of cattle and cruel sacrifice of animals in Gadhimai festival. But the new rules seem weak and far from achieving this objective."

The 2017 notification about the ban on cattle sale in animal market received widespread criticism from people across the country. When the rules were laid down, there was an unprecedented rise in the crimes against cattle traders by fringe groups. States like Kerala, West Bengal, and Meghalaya slammed the rules citing it meddled with people’s food choices.

TheCattleSite News Desk

Top image via Shutterstock



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