An 18-month-old calf was butchered in an open vehicle allegedly by Youth Congress workers who raised slogans against the Centre’s decision to ban sale of cattle for slaughter. Kerala, where 60 per cent of the population eats beef and buffalo meat, had witnessed massive protests against the notification of ban on sale of cattle for slaughtering. The youth wings of various political parties cooked and served beef at hundreds of locations, and drew huge participation. The Centre has banned the sale and purchase of cattle from animal markets for slaughter, a move that is expected to hit export and trade of meat along with leather market.
Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee suspended Youth Congress leader Rijil Makkutty along with two others for slaughtering an ox in public. Whatever happened in Kerala is thoughtless, barbaric and completely unacceptable. The public slaughter was an act of rebellious protest of the ban against selling cattle for slaughter. What was done by Rijil Makkutty was very description of disobedient protest. Whatever happened was just cruel display, but because of one person in the party has erred, Kerala shouldn’t make mistake and punish the people who were protesting on behalf of majority of Keralites.
Anyway, was there any need to add fuel to the political fire by Congress activists? Protest could have been registered in a different way. Cow sentiments runs with Hinduism, it was not appropriate to kill a calf in public. Congress, Communist parties and Muslim league played into the hands of BJP, so that they can start polarizing Kerala also like they have successfully done in other parts of the country.
The new rules, which analysts say will choke cattle trade, have found few takers in Kerala where beef dishes are popular. The Congress party in Kerala, along with ruling Communist Party of India (Marxist), have been using the new norms to mount a fresh attack against BJP, which has been making inroads into the state. The public slaughter, however, shifted the narrative from the restrictions arising out of cattle norms to unnecessary cruelty towards animals, precisely what the BJP wanted.
I am sure a large majority of people of different faiths in Kerala will condemn the barbaric acts done by youth Congress leaders. They are competing with another set of useless leaders from CPM and BJP. All three put together, every second week there is disgust in Kerala. But pioneers, in this field and many other undesirable practices, are the most terrible party called CPM (communists). They say and do everything in the name of democracy. Once they get the power, they turn into a fascist government.
Meanwhile, it is easy to frame rules banning the slaughter of the cow and its progeny, its counterpart the water buffalo, and its passing acquaintance the camel. It is much harder to think of life without soap, toothpaste, paint brushes and surgical stitches. Only 30% of cattle slaughtered in India are used for meat – either local consumption or export – while 70% of the carcass is traded for industries that deal in the aforementioned products, along with about three-dozen other items of daily use. Most of the 30% cattle slaughtered, of course, is the water buffalo because the culling of cows for meat is either totally banned or allowed with strict riders in all but five states. What’s more: eating, selling, transporting or exporting meat of the cow species is a non-bailable offence, punishable with up to 10 years in jail in all of northern, central and western India.
So, when the Government of India issued an ‘extraordinary’ notification, restricting the sale of cattle for slaughter in animal markets and imposing rules that put a majority of the country’s animal markets in danger. It willy-nilly hit much more than the meat industry. The meat industry relies on animal markets for 90% of its supply. According to the 2012 Livestock Census, India has a total of 191 millions cows and bulls, and 109 million water buffaloes. These are together roughly 25 per cent of India’s human population. Most of these end up on the streets at strays, spewing methane in this age of global warming.
India exported 2.4 million tonnes of buffalo meat to 65 countries in 2014-15, or 23.5% of global beef exports according to the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy. It was worth Rs. 30,000 crore, accounting for 1% of India’s total exports, part of the “Pink Revolution” that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had so derisively talked about during the 2014 Lok Sabha campaign.
Human race cannot survive without animal meat or its by-products. Almost, all medicines are extracted from animal sources (or synthetic chemicals) and none in this world is actually a vegetarian or vegan, they indirectly take multi vitamin supplements that are extracted from animals. All humans are omnivores and are non-vegetarians. B12 & other nutritional deficiency could be met only with animal sources.
If you see this ban from economic perspective while it is religious or emotional, one must understand that the Business and Emotions are two sides of a coin. Business cannot be done emotionally nor can emotions be a business. They have to be kept separate. Here emotions are involved. But instead of quarrelling on not to ban the slaughter, one should ask what is being done to take care of aging bovine. How government will shelter and take care of the cattle when their population rises?
Meanwhile politicians should stop displaying the vicious way of protest, if such acts continue, voters may lose faith in their leaders.
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