THE state government on Tuesday accused RSS wings — Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal — of harassing people by capturing their milch animals in garb of a campaign against illegal slaughter.
Animal Husbandry Minister Raj Kishore Singh, while replying to a supplementary question by BJP’s Lokendra Singh in the state Assembly, said: “Members of VHP and Bajrang Dal snatch cattle from the public on grounds of protecting them from illegal slaughter. They beat them up and even torch their vehicles. Ask these VHP and Bajrang Dal people not to do such activities.”
The minister cited an example of his colleague who had allegedly faced the wrath of these outfits. “My fellow minister Chauhan (Tourism Minister Moolchandra Chauhan) told me about the incident. His daughter has a dairy farm and some milch cattle were being transported. Members of VHP and Bajrang Dal captured the cattle and set the vehicle on fire,” he said.
Denying cases of illegal slaughter, Raj Kishore claimed that the existing slaughter houses were not operating to their full capacity, as they were not receiving the required number of animals. He further told the House that currently, 36 licensed slaughter houses are operating in the state.
BJP MLA Lokendra Singh, however, cited the example of Bijnor. He said that illegal slaughter leads to communal tension if any animal goes missing and the thief belongs to another religion.
BJP’s Suresh Rana claimed that it is not a religious issue as milk is need by everyone. He inquired about invoking NSA against those caught indulging in illegal slaughter.
Claiming that the state was committed in stopping illegal slaughter, Raj Kishore said the government has passed instructions for invoking Goonda Act, Gangster Act and opening historysheet of the accused involved in the crime.
Dairy industry is on the rise in UP with introduction of Kamdhenu dairy scheme, he added.
The minister further said that in 2012, the state government had registered 3,655 cases of illegal transportation of animals and booked 8,217 people.
In 2014, the number of cases related to of illegal transportation of animals rose to 4,400 and 8,206 people were named as accused.