Indian Muslim meat traders to take legal action against Modi government over new rules on cattle slaughter

The environment ministry said in a statement on Saturday that the regulation was to protect "animals from cruelty and not to regulate the existing trade in cattle for slaughter houses". Animals for slaughter will have to be bought from farmers directly.

By: Reuters | New Delhi | Updated: May 27, 2017 7:34 pm
cow slaughter ban, cattle slaughter ban, Indian meat traders, Modi and Gau raksha, Cattle slaughter banned, Cow slaughter banned india, cattle sale banned, cow slaughter india The environment ministry said this week that animal markets will only be able to trade in cattle meant for agricultural purposes. (Representational image)

Indian meat traders plan to take the government to court over new rules banning the trading of cattle including buffalo for slaughter, calling it a move by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration to hurt the business run mainly by Muslims.

The environment ministry said this week that animal markets will only be able to trade in cattle meant for agricultural purposes, the biggest blow yet for meat suppliers facing several reverses under Modi’s three-year old
Hindu nationalist government.

The slaughter of cows, considered holy in Hinduism, is banned in most Indian states and laws on the issue have become more stringent over the past few years. Muslims, who make up 14 percent of India’s 1.3 billion people, dominate the Indian meat industry. India is the biggest seller of buffalo meat in the world, with exports of more than $4 billion a year to countries such as Vietnam, Malaysia and Egypt.

But that could change following the government’s May 23 notification regarding changes to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, made public on Friday. It requires owners to declare that cattle have not “been brought to market for sale for slaughter” and for market committees to verify that the buyer is an “agriculturist by seeing the relevant revenue document”. The new rules define cattle as bulls, cows, buffalo, steers, heifers, calves and camels.

“The business is dead,” said Aqil Qureshi, president of the Delhi Buffalo Traders’ Welfare Association who runs a slaughterhouse outside the city and sells hides to leather companies. “We will take legal help, we will hit the streets. Who does not fight for their livelihood?”

The environment ministry said in a statement on Saturday that the regulation was to protect “animals from cruelty and not to regulate the existing trade in cattle for slaughter houses”. Animals for slaughter will have to be bought from farmers directly, it said.

Abdul Faheem Qureshi, a lawyer in the southern city of Hyderabad and head of the All India Jamiatul Quresh Action Committee, said direct buying was “not always practical” and that he was drafting a court appeal after meeting with many of his “shocked” trader clients.

Al Faheem Meatex, an exporter in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, said buying buffalo directly from farmers was likely to raise costs, given stringent norms on cattle transportation. “It will raise costs for us but what else can we do?” the company said. “We will see if we can get some relief from the court.” Qureshi said the new law would only embolden cow vigilantism groups. Muslims have been assaulted by Hindu hardliners over the past few years on suspicion of eating beef or illegally transporting cattle.

GVL Narasimha Rao, a spokesman for Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party, had no immediate comment. Government spokesman Frank Noronha did not respond to requests for comment.

For all the latest India News, download Indian Express App

  1. C
    chitta
    May 28, 2017 at 1:23 pm
    In which Hindu holy book it is written that cow should be treated as god but not chicken. ? Has lord shiv told Hindu that they can it chicken. Aren't chicken animals. ?This is hilarious.
    Reply
    1. D
      Dhaval Jhaveri
      May 28, 2017 at 1:01 pm
      There have always been changes in the human society right since this world started and the changes will always keep happening!!!...Those countries & those people who try to oppose to the changes and try to stick to old laws and old ideologies are always bound to fail and have failed!!!....All these leaders who are trying to oppose to the changes should look around the world and to those countries and those people who have completely opposed to the changes!!!!...they will find the answers themselves that trying to control people in the name of religion or the ideologies of certain leaders has always lead to disaster!!!!!.....
      Reply
      1. D
        Dhaval Jhaveri
        May 28, 2017 at 12:57 pm
        It is high time that the governments stop interfering in the eating & drinking habits of people and focus on what is actually required!!....progress, infrastructure, proper sanitation facilities, better education facilities, sports, financial economy, reduce poverty, law and order!!!!.etc...This is supposed to be a free country and most importantly a democratic country!!!!...You can not tell people what to eat and drink or even try to control that!!!!...This is against the nature of democracy!!!!....There are some people who say that our earlier leaders wanted democracy but with restrictions on eating and drinking!!!!...a complete hypocrisy in the name of democracy!!!!!....
        Reply
        1. C
          chitta
          May 28, 2017 at 10:02 am
          In which Hindu holy book it is written that cow should be treatedas god but not chicken. ? Has lord shiv told Hindu that they can it chicken. Aren't chicken animals. ?This is hilarious.
          Reply
          1. S
            SAK
            May 28, 2017 at 2:31 am
            Alcohol is more danger then slaughter house, there is a scope for modernize the slaughter houses like in western countries, but alcohol cannot be modernize in India, this must be banned for sake of Indians family. Mr. PM you are absolutely a "Chaiwala" and chaiwala take India to dark.
            Reply
            1. A
              Akliyath
              May 27, 2017 at 8:24 pm
              Instead of going to court self discipline the meat trade / slaughter houses with ISO system certification and similar standards practiced​ by the developed countries. That would align interest of everyone. The rules under which the notification is issued will be a valid one and in it lies the health of Indians.
              Reply
              1. A
                albert
                May 27, 2017 at 10:12 pm
                RSS terrorist shut up. Rakshas eat humans and spare cows. Rakshas Raj of Modi and RSS goons.
                Reply
                1. D
                  DANGEROUS MIND
                  May 28, 2017 at 4:53 am
                  Converted should restrain from commenting : ) one bag of rice is enough to change your opinion....i know for that you converted i know.....
                2. S
                  SAK
                  May 28, 2017 at 2:26 am
                  Health of Indians, harms by alcohol banned too, My fellow Indians this government given clear indication to Muslims is "Sub ka saath sub ka vikas" and real one is Rss ka saath sang parivar ka vikas. shuttup you akhlyat
                  Reply
                3. Load More Comments