The shifting of the only slaughterhouse in Bhopal has run into a hurdle with the BJP-ruled Bhopal Municipal Corporation rejecting a proposal to build a modern abattoir at Adampur Chhavani, a few kilometres from the city.
The extended deadline given by the National Green Tribunal (NGT) to shift the slaughterhouse ends on March 31, 2018, after which the delay of each day will invite a fine of Rs 10,000. Located in Jinsi, which is closer to the old city, the congested slaughterhouse does not have an effluent treatment plant.
The alternative sites suggested by the state government and the municipal corporation have been shot down in the past by protesters from those localities. On Thursday, hundreds of people carrying placards and shouting slogans gathered outside the building where the municipal general council was to meet and stood their ground till it was announced that the proposal to make a modernised slaughterhouse had been rejected.
Earlier, a group led by BJP MLA Rameshwar Sharma led a march to Raj Bhavan and members of the Jain community who were present demanded that no slaughterhouse be opened anywhere in the state.
In the 85-member municipal body, the Congress has 27 councillors. The chairman of the BMC council, Surjit Singh Chouhan, said he had to reject the proposal because the majority of councillors, including those from the Congress, had opposed it. He said he had to respect public sentiments because each councillor represents thousands of people.
“Hardly 40 big animals are slaughtered now but at the new abattoir 1,200 will be slaughtered every day. Cows and buffaloes from nearby areas will be stolen at night and brought to the abattoir,’’ Sharma said.
Congress councillor Mohammed Sagir, who had led hundreds of meat traders to the NGT last year saying their livelihood was at stake, asked: “Why not modernise the existing slaughterhouse because every new location was being opposed.”