Chandigarh: It appears that all the BJP ruled states are joining the meat ban wagon. Haryana is the fifth in line to do so. In its order, the state’s urban local bodies department ordered all slaughter houses to be closed from September 11 to September 19 in view of the Jain festival of fasting, Paryushan. The minister heading the department interestingly, belongs to the Jain community.
On Friday, Chattisgarh banned the slaughter and sale of meat till September 17. A meat ban has also been enforced in Rajasthan and Gujarat, both ruled by the BJP.The Rajasthan government has prohibited the sale of meat and fish on September 17, 18 and 27 on account of various festivals, including that of the Jains. The ban has been enforced since 2008 in the state, both by the Ashok Gehlot and Vasundhara Raje governments, but this year, it has been extended by one day, which has angered some groups. In Gujarat’s Ahmedabad, Police Commissioner Shivanand Jha has ordered a ban on the slaughter of cattle like cows and goats for a week during the Jain fasting period. The state enforces the ban every year.
The Haryana announcement came on a day when a similar ban in Mumbai was challenged by mutton traders and opposed by many political parties including the ruling BJP’s ally Shiv Sena. Mumbai’s civic body has, in the wake of the protest, cut short the ban from four to two days.
The Bombay High Court said the ban was “regressive”. “We understand the sentiment part but purchase is an independent choice,” said the judges.
“It is alright to have a two-day ban, but anything beyond that is unacceptable. It affects people’s livelihood… if the ban is beyond two days, people should be compensated for loss of livelihood,” said Salim Engineer, a member of the Forum of Democracy and Communal Harmony.