7 years jail for cow slaughter in Gujarat?
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Last Updated: Tuesday, September 27, 2011, 20:18
Ahmedabad: A bill, seeking seven-year jail term for cow slaughter or even transporting the animal for that purpose, was passed unopposed in Gujarat Assembly on Tuesday, with opposition Congress extending support to it.

As per the provisions of Gujarat Animal Preservation Act (GAPA) 1954, which prohibits cow slaughter, there is no provision to prevent transportation of the animal for slaughter.

Gujarat Animal Preservation (Amendment) Bill 2011- was tabled in the Assembly by Agriculture Minister Dileep Sanghani.

"To strengthen enforcement and implementation of the Act stringent punishment on violation of the provisions has been proposed in the bill," Sanghani said, during a discussion on the bill.

"The six months imprisonment term has been extended to seven years on conviction under the Act and provision of fine up to Rs 50,000 has been made against Rs 1,000 earlier," he said.

Provision to confiscate the vehicle used for carrying cow meat has been made in the bill.

A permit will be required for transporting animals for bona fide agricultural and animal husbandry purposes, the bill says.

"There is anguish amongst the Maldharis (nomads) over this move. Had the government given them land for growing grass to feed the animals, a need to introduce this bill wouldn't have arisen," Leader of Opposition Shaktisinh Gohil said, during discussion on the bill.

"A necessity had arisen to bring this amendment, because 3,32,200 hectares of gauchar land (grazing land), existing in the state way back in the 1980s, had shrunken considerably over the years," Gohil said.

"Majority of the gauchar land has been given away by the Gujarat government to industrialists, under the garb of development," he alleged.

Gohil claimed during the discussion on bill that around 26,790 kg of beef was alone seized in Ahmedabad in last seven months.

"We have supported this bill and it has been passed unanimously in the assembly today, with a few changes, as suggested by us," Gohil said.

The bill shall now be sent for the assent of Gujarat Governor.


First Published: Tuesday, September 27, 2011, 20:18

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