Cow killers will be hanged, says Raman Singh
Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh. PTI File Photo
“Have you heard of cow slaughter here in the past 15 years? If someone does that, we will hang him,” Singh said.
The chief minister’s reaction comes in the wake of the BJP government in Gujarat amending its law to make punishment for cow slaughter harsher, and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath ordering a crackdown on illegal abattoirs and shops selling meat.
Singh, however, did not clarify whether he intends to amend the laws in Chhattisgarh to award the extreme punishment to people who kill cows for consumption.
After becoming the chief minister of the tribal state in December 2003, he had banned the slaughter of cows, buffaloes and bulls.
Even possession of meat and transportation of animals for slaughter in other states is not permissible under the state laws. The offence invites punishment of seven years in jail and a fine of up to Rs 50,000.
Ahead of the elections later this year, the Gujarat Assembly on Friday passed an amendment to the Gujarat Animal Preservation Act of 1954, enhancing maximum punishment for cow slaughter to life imprisonment and a fine of up to Rs 5 lakh. Under the tweaked law, cow slaughter has become a non-bailable offence in Gujarat.
Since the Narendra Modi government came to power in 2014, the issue of the protection of cows, considered sacred by the Hindus, has been raised on several occasions, and also lead to attacks on Muslims over consumption of beef.
In December, the Union environment ministry wrote to the department of animal husbandry to consider the option of enacting a national law to ban the slaughter and sale of cow meat.
The BJP-ruled states of Maharashtra and Haryana have banned the sale of beef since Modi became the prime minister.
States and Union Territories where cow slaughter is illegal include Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Assam, Bihar, Chandigarh, Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand,
Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra. States that permit cow slaughter are Kerala, West Bengal, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Tripura and Sikkim.