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FIVE DAYS after the state government began its crackdown on illegal and mechanised slaughterhouses in Uttar Pradesh, more than half of its licensed slaughterhouses have also been “temporarily closed” for not following norms. While there are 44 licensed slaughterhouses in the state, 26 have been “temporarily shut” for not following basic rules and guidelines laid down for operation, transportation and processing of slaughtered animals. On March 22, three days after Yogi Adityanath took oath as chief minister, the state government issued orders to all divisional commissioners, district magistrates, senior police officers and municipal corporations to inspect slaughterhouses.
They were asked to report to the chief secretary within seven days about the action they had taken.
“As many as 26 licensed slaughterhouses have been shut down during the last five days, as they were not following the set rules. It is not a permanent closure… they have been temporarily closed and would be allowed to function once they follow all norms,” Chief Secretary Rahul Bhatnagar said.
Asked how many of these are mechanised, Bhatnagar said most are. “There is no official count on illegal slaughterhouses being shut down since there is no official record,” he added. On how the government will handle the strike announced by meat sellers, he said that so far, no representative has met him with their complaints or demands.
“Our action is based on the Supreme Court order in the Laxmi Narain Modi vs Union of India case and also the May 12, 2015 order of the National Green Tribunal,” Bhatnagar maintained.
The crackdown is largely based on a list of 24 rules, regulations and existing Acts — formulated by both Centre and states from time to time — which should be followed for running a slaughterhouse.
These include sections 3, 9, 11 and 38 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act-1960 and its corresponding rules — formulated in 2000 — related to the transportation of animals on foot. Guidelines regarding slaughterhouses, formulated in 2001, also find mention in the list.
Moreover, slaughterhouses are supposed to fill a performa for “ante and postmortem fitness certificates to be issued by the veterinary doctor after examining the animal before and after slaughter”.
Section 125 E of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, pertaining to the transportation of livestock, also specify how slaughtered animals are to be ferried.
Further, Environment (Protection) Rules-1986, which define standards for effluent discharge, Water (Preservation and Control of Pollution) Act-1974, Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act-1981 and Municipal Solid Wastes (Management and Handling) Rules-2000 are also a part of these regulations.