The decision to ban the sale of meat during the Jain community’s festival during which a fast is observed has led to sniping between alliance partners Shiv Sena and BJP.
Mumbai BJP president and MLA Ashish Shelar said the decision was taken at the civic body level and the BJP-led government had no role in it. “This tradition of banning meat for four days has been continuing for the last five years and those speaking against it were holding power in the municipal corporation,” he said, speaking about the ban in Mumbai.
The Shiv Sena had come down heavily on the proposal moved by the Mira Bhayander Municipal Corporation (MBMC), which is led by the BJP, to ban the sale of meat for 8 days, as against four days followed in other municipal corporations like Mumbai during the Jain festival, Paryushan.
Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Raut equated the decision with “religious terrorism”.
“There are Sikhs, Muslims, Christians and Jains who consider themselves as minorities. And we respect them but they should not dictate what we should eat,” he said.
The BJP took umbrage at Sena’s criticism. “Do not inflame passions and create division in people. The populace is sick of these frequent bouts some parties indulge in,” Shelar said.
The Sena said that the BMC was forced to buckle under BJP’s pressure.