Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Sunday backed the demand for a total ban on cow slaughter across the country but admitted that it would not be easy to get a law passed due to the present Parliamentary arithmetic.
The former BJP chief was addressing a convention of Jain saints and sadhvis in Indore on Sunday. The event was also attended by Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
Before Singh took to the stage, the earlier speakers had demanded a total ban on cow slaughter and beef exports and wanted him to make an announcement on moving a bill in the current session of Parliament.
However, Singh did not give any assurance on moving the anti-cow slaughter bill but said every effort would be made to form a consensus. He took the credit for ensuring quick passage of the Maharashtra bill that was pending for a long time.
While praising Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Maharashtra for their laws on beef ban, Singh said as a minister in the Atal Behari Vajpayee government he wanted to table a bill against cow slaughter but could not go ahead after a ‘commotion’ in the House.
Meanwhile, comparing cow slaughter with homicide, Chouhan said his government had brought a stricter law by amending the previous legislation that was found wanting in some respect.
Chouhan said the MP law not only bans slaughter of cow progeny but also transport, storage and eating. The CM said his government would not allow beef export at any cost and will make efforts to promote vegetarianism. He added that his government had rejected several proposals to set up modern slaughterhouses in the state in the past few years.
It was only a few years ago that Chouhan had announced to exclude eggs from the menu in Bhopal anganwadis.