New beef ban law comes into force in Maharashtra; 3 booked in Malegaon for allegedly slaughtering calves

By Staff Reporter,

Malegaon (Maharashtra): In a first case after the BJP-Shiv Sena government’s approved Maharashtra Animal Prevention Bill came into effect, police have booked three persons for allegedly slaughtering two calves in Malegaon town of Nashik district.

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Malegaon police on Wednesday booked three people, identified as Hameed alias Lendi, Rashid alias Pandiya and Asif Talathi, under the newly amended Maharashtra Animal Prevention (Amendment) Act,1995, for allegedly slaughtering two calves.

On Wednesday, the Malegaon police had raided an abandoned shop. Alleged traders had fled but the police managed to seize 150 kg of beef worth Rs 35,000.

Hamid and Rashid, were arrested early Friday morning from Dhule, 53 km from Malegaon. Talathi is reportedly still absconding.

Confirming the development, Additional Superintendent of Police, Malegaon, Sunil Kadasane told The Indian Express, “We had source-based information that the two calves were illegally smuggled for slaughtering in an abandon shop within the jurisdiction of Azad Nagar police station. A team was sent but by then the accused had fled from the spot.”

“We got a tip-off that the duo were planning to flee the state. We laid a trap and nabbed them Friday morning,” he said after the arresting.

The duo has been remanded to police custody till March 31.

Maharashtra Animal Preservation (Amendment) Act came into place on March 4, 2015 after President Pranab Mukherjee gave his assent to the Maharashtra Animal Preservation (Amendment) Bill, which had been pending since 1995 during the previous Sena-BJP rule. The current BJP-Sena government has cracked down on the slaughter of bulls and bullocks.

Under the amended law, even the slaughter of bulls, calves and bullocks is a criminal offense liable with punishment up to five years imprisonment and a fine of Rs 10,000.

Reactions of people on the case

Meanwhile the 20,000 strong Qureshi community of Malegaon while condemning this said that the government has failed to protect their interests.

“We feel disappointed and cheated by the present government. They are spending around Rs.1000 crore in protecting cows, bullocks and buffaloes but what about us? We are human beings. What about our interests? We are left jobless,” a visibly angry Naeem Qureshi, a Malegaon resident told The Indian Express.

“Such law will lead to lawlessness in the town. 20,000 people are left unemployed overnight. We have families to feed. How are we going to feed them? The government should rethink on the legislature and take it back. We will continue to protest till the government rules in our favor,” he adds. Earlier this week over 1000 members of the Qureshi community protested at Mumbai’s Azad maid.

Social media too burst into criticism and taunted the new law in the aftermath of this arresting. “Is this democratic? It’s just like making every religion follow them. Just b’cz Hindus dont eat beef does’nt mean others wont!!” tweeted one user.

Izhar shaikh, an MBA student and resident of Malegaon said, “How can government dictate people what not to eat. Forcing one community’s views over others is wrong; this is not the way how democratic country progress, you have to look for everybody and not just one particular community”.