Amid the raging controversy over cow slaughter, the government Tuesday initiated steps to check the illegal export of cow meat. During a meeting between Minister of State for Agriculture Sanjeev Balyan and Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), it was decided to set up a lab at the Mumbai port to test the samples of meat being exported and to closely monitor the functioning of the registered export firms.
Balyan, who expressed the Centre’s helplessness in controlling the slaughter houses across the country as they are under the supervision of the state governments, said it would take all possible steps to check the illegal export of cow meat.
According to him, the fall in meat export, which was 14.7 per cent during April-September, could be due to the Centre’s strict directives to export firms.
“I cannot say that cow meat is being exported. But I, like many others, have the suspicion because there is an increase in cow thefts in states like Uttar Pradesh. Where have they gone? We are just trying to regularise the
exports,” he said.
The meeting was held in the backdrop of the controversy over the killing of a man in Dadri, following rumours of consumption of beef.
“APEDA officials said there is no illegal export of cow meat as production and exports are strictly monitored through a software ‘Meat Net’. However, it has been decided to set up labs at ports to check illegal export of cow meat,” Balyan said.
Exports are largely undertaken via the Mumbai port, he said.