The Supreme Court on Wednesday issued a notice to the Maharashtra Government on the petition challenging the order on the possession of cattle meat to be declared illegal in the state.
Earlier, the Bombay High Court had examined the Maharashtra Animal Preservation (Amendment) Act, 1995, under challenge.
This law had been amended to include Section 5 D that banned people from possessing meat of cow, bulls and bullocks, slaughtered within or outside the state.
The High Court had struck down the provision of law dealing with procurement from outside Maharashtra.
The court had struck it down after finding it unconstitutional and in violation of the Right to Life and said when a person procures beef from a place where it is legal to consume and possesses beef then the law cannot prohibit him from eating it in the state.
The court did not mince words on the subject of people’s food habits and said that the people needed to be given their privacy and choice, especially when their choice of food is not injurious to health.
“A citizen has a right to lead a meaningful life within the four corners of his house as well as outside his house. The state cannot prevent a citizen from possessing and consuming a particular type of food which is not injurious to health (or obnoxious),” the judgment said.
“Preventing a citizen from possessing flesh of cow, bull or bullock slaughtered outside the state amounts to prohibiting a citizen from possessing and consuming food of his choice,” the court ruled.