Karnataka Anti-Cow Slaughter Bill: Cabinet Passes Ordinance
With the law now passed as an ordinance, it has to be vetted by the Council within six week.
The Karnataka Cabinet on Monday took the ordinance route to put into effect the stringent anti-cattle slaughter law in the state after the government failed to introduce it in the Legislative Council in the recently-concluded legislative session.
Minister of Animal Husbandry Prabhu Chauhan said, “As the Congress sabotaged the session at Vidhana Parishad, the Bill could not be passed. But the BJP is firm on protecting cows so the Bill has been implemented through an ordinance.”
"Cow holds a high place in the culture of our country and is a backbone to the livelihood of a farmer. The decreasing number of cows from year to year is concerning. In this condition, if we forget our differences and come to protect our cows, we can protect the animal wealth of our state. Just out of political interest, opposing the Bill to create a wrong picture amongst people is not correct," he added.
It may be recalled that the Karnataka Prevention of Slaughter and Preservation of Cattle Bill, 2020, was passed by the state Assembly on December 9 without any discussion, despite vocal opposition from the Congress and the JD(S).
However, in order to be made a law, the Bill had to get approved by the Legislative Council too. But unlike in the Assembly, the ruling BJP does not have favourable numbers in the Council. While the BJP has 31 MLCs (Member of Legislative Council), the Congress and JD(S) have 29 and 14 MLCs respectively.
With the law now passed as an ordinance awaiting the Governor’s assent, it has to be vetted by the Council within six weeks, where the Bill is yet to be introduced. Otherwise, the law will not exist. However, the government can pass a fresh ordinance.
It may be recalled that former Chief Minister and JD(S) leader HD Kumaraswamy in an interview with TNM had confirmed that his party won’t support the passage of the Bill. With the BJP lacking a majority in the upper house of the state legislature, support from the JD(S) was crucial for the ruling BJP.
The new law bans slaughtering of all cattle — cow, the calf of a cow, bull, bullock only with the exception of male or female buffalo above the age of 13. The penal provisions of the law say that punishment for the same will result in a fine of Rs 50,000 to Rs 10 lakh per animal and three to seven years’ imprisonment. Importantly, the law also allows police to carry out search and seizure on the basis of suspicion that cattle is being sold, purchased or disposed of for the purpose of slaughter.
(Published in an arrangement with The News Minute.)
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