Decision needs a rethink

cattle-kolkata Photo by Salil Bera

Open Letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the ban on sale of cattle for slaughter

Dear Narendra Modi,

I am sure you will admit that the government’s order banning the sale of cattle for slaughter has stirred a hornet’s nest. Though your governments in the states, too, could be bristling but choose to remain silent, the opposition has been gunning for you. The states ruled by opposition parties have not only been voicing their protests but have also been witness to ‘beef festivals’, too.

The effects of the ill-advised ban are manifold. For one, it is a direct interference by the Centre in the eating habits of people—a clear infringement of their constitutional rights. It also deprives a whole class of people, including dairy farmers and agriculturists, who replenish their animal stock by selling their cattle that have outlived their utility, to the slaughter houses.

Further, one of the major consumers of beef are the wild cats housed in zoos across the country who were being fed this meat as all other forms of meat, including mutton, would turn out to be uneconomical, given their astronomical price in the market. And to cap it all, what is the dire need for the government to enact these kinds of laws which only cut into the GDP and serve no worthwhile purpose in escalating economic growth or creating more employment opportunities?

Cow slaughter as such is banned in many states and those found guilty can be punished under the IPC. Is it not enough to stop right there and not extend the ban to all other forms of cattle? Clearly, this ban merits a rethink and the sooner it is lifted, the better.

Vijayalakshmi A.


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