Madras High Court Stays Government's Cattle Notification for Four Weeks
The Madurai bench of the Madras High Court on Tuesday stayed - for a period of four weeks - the Centre's Gazette notification banning the sale and purchase of cattle for the purpose of slaughter.
(Image for representation only. Getty Images)
New Delhi: The Madurai bench of the Madras High Court on Tuesday stayed - for a period of four weeks - the Centre's Gazette notification banning the sale and purchase of cattle for the purpose of slaughter.
The court has also sought a response from the Centre and State governments within four weeks' time. The court was hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by S Selvagomathy.
A Madurai-based activist and lawyer, Selvagomathy, stated in the PIL that the notification was repugnant to the parent Act itself since Section 28 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PCA) Act of 1960 specifically states that it shall not be an offence to kill any animal in a manner required by the religion of any community.
The Central government’s new notification has imposed a blanket prohibition on the slaughtering of cattle (cows, bulls, buffaloes, camels, heifers) brought from animal markets. Issued on May 23, the notification bans the sale of cattle for culling and also restrains sacrificing the animals for religious purposes.
The notification has engrafted new norms in accordance with the rule-making power of the Central government under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PCA) Act. The new rules called the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules, 2017, therefore tend to put a full stop on the slaughtering of not just the cows but also other animals defined as ‘cattle’ under the Act.
Opposing the restrictions on the sale of cattle for the purpose of slaughter, Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, communicating his disapproval of the notification.
Two days later, the chief minister addressed a similar letter to all the state chief ministers, including those of the BJP, emphasising that the notification was an "encroachment on the state legislature" and compromised the "federal structure of governance".
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