Close Meat Shops During Navratri, Devotees 'Uncomfortable': 2 Delhi Mayors
Meanwhile, a BJP MP also supported the Meat ban, stating that the whole country should implement it.
The South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) Mayor Mukkesh Suryaan wrote a letter to the commissioner on Monday, 4 April, seeking a closure of meat shops and ban on the sale of meat during the nine-day Hindu festival of Navratri from 2 to 11 April.
Later, East Delhi Mayor Shyam Sundar Agarwal and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Parvesh Sahib Singh Verma extended their support to the controversial ban on meat.
In his letter, Suryaan reasoned that during Navratri, devotees even shun onion and garlic and the sight of meat near temples "makes them uncomfortable."
In a letter to the commissioner of the South MCD, Suryaan said,
"Their religious beliefs and sentiments are also affected when they come across meat shops or when they have to bear the foul smell of the meat on their way to offer daily prayers to the goddess."
'An Appalling Sight': SDMC Mayor Mukkesh Suryaan
The mayor said that some meat shops dump waste in a gutter or beside the road, which stray dogs feed on. He said it was not only “unhygienic” but is “an appalling sight” for devotes on the way to the temple.
He added, “Such events can be restricted if the meat shops are closed down during the period of Navratri festival in the area under the jurisdiction of South Delhi Municipal Corporation and the closing of meat shops near temples is also necessary to maintain the cleanliness in and around temples.”
The mayor urged the commissioner to keep in view “the sentiments and feelings of the general public” and give directions to officers to take necessary action for the closure of meat shops during Navratri.
Suryaan said that he had decided that no meat shops would be open in South MCD and that the decision will be implemented from Tuesday and warned that a fine will be imposed on violators, reported news agency ANI.
East Delhi Mayor, BJP MP Join In
A day later on Tuesday, 5 April, East Delhi Mayor Shyam Sundar Agarwal, said that for now, it is an appeal, while BJP MP Parvesh Sahib Singh Verma welcomed the decision taken by South MCD.
Repeating the same, Agarwal stated that we (Hindus) don't even consume even onion-garlic during Navratri and claimed that he has appealed to all meat sellers to understand Hindu sentiments and close their shops on those days.
"It will promote harmony," he said.
He was further quoted as saying, "But besides this, we have a rule that slaughterhouses won't function on Saptami, Ashtami and the day of Navratri. If slaughterhouses will be closed, meat will not be sold."
He added that he has written to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to roll back discounts on alcohol during Navratri festival and stop the sale of liquor for the nine-day Navratri period.
Meanwhile, BJP's Verma extended support to the ban and said it should be extended across the country. "I request Muslims that don't come into any controversies," he said, according to NDTV.
"I welcome the decision which was taken by South MCD. I want all three municipal corporations to implement this. Also, I want Delhi-NCR and the whole country to implement this," he said.
"Our culture says that we have to respect every religion... Modi government schemes are for every religion," he added.
(With inputs from ANI and NDTV.)
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