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After massive protest, Gujarat withdraws controversial cattle Bill

The bill, which had proposed to licence, regulate and prohibit cattle movements in the urban areas, was passed on the last day of the budget session in March after a marathon discussion for six hours in which the Congress had strongly opposed it.

Stray cattle blocking traffic on a road (Express/file)

Following stiff opposition from the maldhari (cattle herders) community, the Gujarat government withdrew the controversial Gujarat Cattle Control (Keeping and Moving) in Urban Areas Bill, 2022, during the two-day Assembly session in Gandhinagar Wednesday. The government’s proposal was unanimously passed with support from the opposition Congress.

The bill, which had proposed to licence, regulate and prohibit cattle movements in the urban areas, was passed on the last day of the budget session in March after a marathon discussion for six hours in which the Congress had strongly opposed it.

However, after growing protests from the maldharis, the ruling BJP had recently declared that the Bill would be withdrawn in the next session of the Assembly. Despite the party’s assurance, the maldharis decided to continue the protests and held a massive mahapanchayat in Gandhinagar on September 18.

A day later, Governor Acharya Devvrat sent back the Bill to the state government for reconsideration in view of the large-scale opposition.

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Following this, Gujarat Speaker Nimaben Acharya read out the Governor’s message while sending back the Bill to reconsider it as the two-day Assembly session began Wednesday. “In the matter of the present Bill, a large number of memorandums and representations have been received in the Raj Bhavan, particularly from the maldhari community…” the message read.

Following this, minister Vinod Moradiya moved a proposal seeking permission to withdraw the Bill. The proposal was passed unanimously by the Assembly.

First published on: 21-09-2022 at 17:16 IST
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