Central Government’s decision to withdraw the ban on the sale of Cattle for slaughter comes as a huge relief to cowherds and farmers not only in Goa but across the country. The ban had been notified mainly to prevent cruelty to the animals viz. pitiful conditions of cattle transported for slaughter and unhygienic conditions of abattoirs across the country.
Cattle transportation across states for sale to abattoirs
(The Ministry of Environment and Forests in its May 23, 2017, notification had sought feedback from the states on changes made to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Market) Rules, 2017.)
Due to severe criticism for its ‘nationwide ban on ideological grounds’ and several incidents of harassment and assault that erupted across the country by ‘gau-rakshaks’ (cattle protection groups) on innocent people, the Centre decided to withdraw the ban.
Incidents of Cattle straying onto the roads in Goa have been a major concern. The result – innumerable vehicular accidents caused by them. The menace of stray cattle attained alarming proportions. The number of cattle seen straying onto National and State Highways and into paddy fields, increased. Farmers evicted their animals for lack of means to feed and maintain them. Trade of cattle was restricted to Agricultural purposes only.
According to the Minister for Environment, Harsh Vardhan, the rules were a “regulatory regime” and the government “did not intend to directly or indirectly affect slaughterhouses or harm farmers” or “influence the food habits of people”. (Indian Express)