The Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) has taken strong exception to the Central Government’s notification banning the sale of cows and buffaloes for slaughter at animal markets across India while allowing only farmland owners to trade at animal markets. The notification covers bulls, bullocks, cows, buffaloes, steers, heifers and calves, as well as the camel trade.
SDPI National President A. Sayeed in a press statement said that this unwise move of the NDA Government will crimp supplies to India’s Rs.1 lakh crore meat industry which sources about 90% of its requirement from animal markets. The rest comes for licensed breeders.
Sayeed expressed the apprehension that the expanding protection for bovines is a proxy war against Dalits and Muslims – as exemplified by the lynching of dairy farmer Pehlu Khan in Rajasthan in April or the flogging of Dalit men in Gujarat’s Una last year. He said the new rules will hurt the mostly Muslim meat and leather traders who face mounting violence by increasingly assertive cow vigilante groups. Farmers will also be hit because they will be deprived of a traditional source of income from selling non-milch and ageing cattle. The farmers of this country will be more prone to bear the brunt of this senseless move of the BJP government which will push them into more trouble and burden.
He said what would a cow breeder or a poor farmer do once the animal has lived its shelf life?? Let it rot in its stables or fields or send it to PMO? This will certainly mark the death of the dairy industry in India, which was built up so well by dedicated bureaucrats and governments over the last 70 years. This move of the BJP government at Center is anti-democratic and anti-farmer and also implementing the hidden agenda of RSS to make India into a vegetarian country, he added. Sayeed stated that this blanket ban of sale of bovines is also another conspiracy to obstruct religious ritual of Muslims during Bakried namely ‘Qurbani’ and such a meddling and violent trespassing during Bakried is widespread in the country.
Sayeed pointed out that there are lot of issues the government has to address seriously viz. poverty, education, health, etc. The government can leave the matter to status quo. There is no point stirring a hornet’s nest. Then what to do with aged cows? Meat export will be hit and country’s income will suffer. Thousands of people will be thrown out of job. There will be scarcity of food too, he added.
The statement said that let individual states decide. If the people of a state want to have such laws, let the state institute the law. If a state wants, it can have even stricter laws. Who is the Central government to dictate to the states?