FINDING itself caught on the wrong foot,
the BJP-Shiv Sena government in
Maharashtra reversed its decision to
amend the Maharashtra Animal
Preservation Act, 1976, calling for a total
ban on the slaughter of bullocks. On
August 2, it withdrew the Maharashtra
Animal Preservation (amendment) Bill,
1995, following waves of protests.
Heading the opposition was the Bombay Pradesh Qaumi Tanzeem, a Congress - sp on sored outfit. Shamim Qureshi, president of Qaumi Tanzeem, alleged that the decision was politically motivated. The bill did not care about the plight of the people in the lower income group, for whom beef is the cheapest and most nutritious food, he added. The cost of feeding the animals, once they had outlived their utility, would be difficult to sustain for the average farmer. The ban will thus reduce the value of the bullock, which is traditionally regarded as the farmer's capital, to zero.
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