Criticising the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Uttar Pradesh Government for banning slaughterhouses in the state, the Samajwadi Party on Tuesday alleged that the saffron party is doing this in order to please one community over the other despite the fact that Hindus are the largest consumers of meat.
“During elections they promised that they will close down slaughter house, they never said that they will close down small meat shops and the way small meat shops are being closed upon the directions of the state government, the meat owners are now facing difficulty in sustaining their life,” Samajwadi Party leader Naresh Aggarwal told ANI.
“It is not as if only Muslims consume meat, one of the largest consumers of meat are Hindus. From tomorrow onwards Navaratri will begin, and small meat shops will see a drastic 80 percent fall of its customers and we all know why. Muslims don’t celebrate Navaratiri, only Hindus do. If the government thinks that they are pleasing a community by attacking another, then this is bad,” he added.
Uttar Pradesh cabinet minister Siddharth Nath Singh on Monday said that the state government would only act against slaughterhouses that are illegal.
“We have assembled here to give a clarification that it is an investigation only against the illegal slaughterhouses. Those who have licenses have nothing to fear. They should continue following regulations,” Singh told media. The minister further said it was also a message to the officers not to overstep their jurisdiction and the mandate given by the state government.
“We also want to say that super excited officials should use their discretion with the sellers who have licenses. Do not do unnecessary investigation. For instance, if the shops have licenses but don’t have CCTVs, as per rule, then the officials don’t need to shut them but give them some time to get it installed. Later, they can go an an inspection and check if it has been put,” he said.
Singh further said that if a licensed slaughterhouse is contributing to pollution and affecting health, then it must be shut down temporarily in order to set things right. The cabinet minister further clarified that no orders have been issued by the government to close down shops selling chicken and eggs, urging people not to believe news of it going around on social media.
After coming to power, the Yogi Adityanath-led government has ordered the closure of illegal slaughterhouses and strict enforcement of the ban on cow smuggling to fulfill a key electoral promise. Adityanath earlier on Saturday said abattoirs operating legally will not be touched but action will be taken against those being run illegally.