Directs Delhi Police to ensure no such festival is held in future
The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) and the Delhi Police to ensure that no beef and pork festival takes place on the campus.
The issue of the beef and pork festival had become a major talking point during the recently held JNU students union elections.
A newly-formed students organisation,The New Materialists,had announced plans to hold a beef and pork festival on the campus on September 28.
A division bench of Acting Chief Justice A K Sikri and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw said: The JNU administration and the Delhi Police are directed to ensure that no such beef and pork festival takes place on September 28 or in future.
The courts direction came on a petition filed by Rashtriya Goraksha Sena seeking directions to JNU authorities to initiate disciplinary action against organisations and not permit serving of beef and pork or any other thing on campus that might hurt religious sentiments.
The plea also sought direction for the Ministry of Home Affairs and Delhi Police to initiate preventive measures against the anti-social elements who have planned and declared a beef and pork festival on September 28.
Barely a year old,The New Materialists had put up posters announcing Why JNU needs a beef and pork festival.
If bhaang can be distributed openly during Holi,why cant JNU dhabas serve beef and pork,asked The New Materialists.
The proposed festival had led to angry reactions from the ABVP and a split in the NSUI. The student bodies said such a festival would hurt religious sentiment of students and could lead to violence on campus.
On September 17,the JNU authorities had also warned students against organising such an event.
Appearing for the Centre,Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Rajeev Mehra submitted in the court that a circular issued by JNU had warned students against the possession,consumption or cooking of beef on campus,pointing to the law that prohibits cow slaughter in the Capital.
The notice cited the Delhi Agricultural Cattle Preservation Act of 1994,which specifies that a person found violating the law may land in jail for five years or have to pay a fine up to Rs.10,000 for storing or serving beef.
In April this year,a beef festival organised at the Osmania University in Hyderabad led to violence on the campus and police had to be called in.
JNU ABVP general secretary Sandip Kumar Singh had issued a statement that the ABVP will not tolerate these kind of activities on the campus,which is solely crafted to hurt sentiments of the majority students.
Members of the NSUI too said many within their organisation are against such a festival. The SFI-JNU has called it a matter of individual food choice.