Karnataka Govt Forms Team to Study Beef Ban & Bring Back Old Bill

The BJP is pushing for the new draft Bill, which is more stringent than the 2010 Bill, to be implemented.

3 min read
Four lakh adult cattle and two lakh young cattle were slaughtered between 2015-2016

Nine years after it was turned down by then Governor of Karnataka, the controversial Karnataka Prevention of Slaughter and Preservation of Cattle Bill introduced by the BJP in 2010, is expected to return. Some of its provisions can essentially result in a beef ban in the state.

A minister in the Karnataka cabinet CT Ravi told The Quint that a team is looking into similar laws introduced in other states and, based on their findings, the 2010 Bill will be reintroduced.

Defining beef as meat of any cattle, clause 5 of this draft Bill had proposed the prohibition of the sale, use and possession of beef. It had also proposed not less than one year jail term and up to Rs 25,000 fine for the sale and the possession of beef.

The minister said the recommendations from the team working on the proposal will be added to the 2010 Bill. “We want to get the best of anti-cow slaughter laws in country and incorporate them here,” Ravi said.

In 2010, when BJP was in power this bill was turned down by then Governor Hansraj Bharadwaj. It was later revoked by the Siddaramaiah-led Congress government in 2013.

1964 Bill vs 2010 Bill

Former Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa has been made the president of BJP’s state unit
Former Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yeddyurappa has been made the president of BJP’s state unit
(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/@BSYBJP)

The state already has an anti-cattle slaughter bill – Karnataka Prevention of Cow Slaughter and Cattle Preservation Act, 1964. The provisions of this, however, were restricted to the slaughter of cows, calves and she-buffaloes.

The law allowed for the slaughter of bulls, bullocks and buffaloes, provided they were aged above twelve, or were no longer fit for breeding or did not give milk. The law also required certification from a competitive authority for slaughter.

However, the Bill proposed by the BJP in 2010 had removed the distinction between ‘cow’ and ‘cattle’ and made slaughter of all kinds of cattle, including buffaloes, a punishable crime.

The biggest point of contention, however, was the severity of the penalty. The maximum imprisonment for violating the provisions of the 1964 Act was six months and a Rs 1,000 fine.

As per the 2010 draft, all crimes other slaughter of cattle will be punishable with imprisonment for not less than one year, which may extend up to seven years, or a fine between Rs 25,000 to Rs 50,000, or both.

A second and subsequent offence would attract a fine of not less than Rs 50,000 up to Rs 1 lakh along with an imprisonment penalty. This is more than any other state in the country.

New, More Stringent Bill Proposed

The Cow Protection Cell of the Karnataka BJP, on Wednesday, 29 August, submitted a memorandum to Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa demanding a strict law against cow slaughter in the state.

The BJP, in its manifesto for 2018 Assembly polls, had promised to bring in a stringent law to ban cow slaughter in Karnataka. Given the demand from the cow protection group, the law is expected to gather momentum.

Since the introduction of the Anti-Cow Slaughter Bill was a part of the BJP’s manifesto, the return of the 2010 law was expected by many. However, the Cow Protection Cell of the BJP state unit, which met the chief minister on Wednesday, submitted a new draft of the Bill on the prevention of cow slaughter.

This proposal was backed by BJP MLAs D Vedavyas Kamath, Sunil Kumar, Umanath Kotian, and Raghupathi Bhat as well. According to sources, the BJP is pushing for the new draft Bill, which is more stringent than the 2010 Bill, to be implemented.

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