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Cattle trafficking; SC asks Centre, states to keep up vigil on Indo-Nepal border

The Supreme Court on Friday asked the Centre and the states bordering Nepal to maintain tight vigil on the international border and ensure that no illegal transportation of cattle takes place for being sacrificed during the Gadhimai festival in the neighbouring country.



New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday asked the Centre and the states bordering Nepal to maintain tight vigil on the international border and ensure that no illegal transportation of cattle takes place for being sacrificed during the Gadhimai festival in the neighbouring country.

"The Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) and some of the states are doing good work. They may continue it vigorously till the festival (Gadhimai) which is scheduled on November 28-29," a bench headed by Justice JS Kehar said.

It also asked states like Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Bihar and West Bengal to come up with "suggestions and inputs" within four weeks for putting in place a mechanism to stop the illegal transportation of cattle.

The court, meanwhile, hailed the efforts undertaken by SSB saying that the force has done a "good job" by rescuing around 2,000 animals from being illegally sent to Nepal.

"They have also arrested 60-70 people," it said.

Earlier, the court had asked the Centre to ensure that no illegal transportation of cattle takes place.

It had also asked Solicitor General (SG) Ranjit Kumar to sit with the counsel of states concerned to frame recommendations on the issue.

The court is hearing a PIL that alleged a large number of cattle is exported illegally to Nepal for Gadhimai festival held once in five years and is scheduled for November 28 and 29 this year.

The SG had informed the bench that only those people having license can be allowed to export cattle and an order has already been passed by the government to stop illegal "infiltration" of animals in the neighbouring country.

He, however, had said government cannot do anything about the cattle being sacrificed in Nepal.

The bench also said it cannot pass any order regarding treatment of animals in the neighbouring country but said it would pass a direction to prevent torture of animals while they are being taken to Nepal.

The petitioner alleged that 5,00,000 animals are slaughtered over two days in the festival and over 70 per cent of the animals sacrificed there are brought illegally from Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.

 

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