The Supreme Court on Thursday refused to lift the stay on meat ban in Mumbai, criticising the imposition of ban in strong words.
Refusing to intervene on the issue while hearing a petition filed by a trust against the Bombay High Court order staying the ban, the Supreme Court said that the issue should be dealt with sensitively.
Disapproving the ban, the apex court said "it is not an issue that can be forced down one's throat".
It directed the Bombay High Court to dispose off the petition within six months.
The Bombay High Court had stayed the ban on sale of meat on September 17 as the Bombay Mutton Dealers Association had challenged the ban on slaughter and sale of meat during Jain festival Paryushan.
The court had criticised the ban and questioned how the corporation can restrict the sale of meat.
The BMC counsel had on Friday informed court that the ban was originally meant only for slaughter of animals and the ban on sale of meat was consequential. It had argued that this was keeping in mind the health concerns of the public since the meat sold will be fresh.
The court had questioned that when there is storage available, it is an individual's choice when they want to purchase and it cannot be restricted.