Allahabad HC points out misuse of cow slaughter law

The court, as it has many times in the past, granted bail to an accused and noted that the law was not applied appropriately in the case

The Allahabad High Court granted bail to an accused under the U.P. Prevention of Cow Slaughter Act while observing that mere transportation of cows does not amount to offence under the Act. The bench of Justice Vikram D Chauhan held that the State was unable to provide material to indicate that the applicant, Kundan Yadav had committed any offence under the Act.

The counsel for the applicant submitted that there is no allegation of slaughter against him and that he was not apprehended from the spot. In fact, six cows were recovered from a vehicle and there was no evidence to link the applicant with the crime. The State did not dispute the facts as presented by the applicant’s counsel.

The court noted that the State failed to show any material that indicates that the applicant slaughtered any cow.

“The alleged act cannot be stated to come within the ambit of section 2(d) of U.P. Act No. 1 of 1956. There is no independent witness of the recovery. Mere possession of live cow/bullock by itself cannot amount to committing, abetting, or attempting an offence under the Act No. 1 of 1956,” the court held.

The court further held that mere transportation of the cow from one place to another does not amount to committing, abetting or attempting to commit an offence under the U.P. Prevention of Cow Slaughter Act. The court held that the State has not provided any material to show that any physical injury has been caused to the cow. Keeping the Principle ‘Bail is rule and jail is exception,’ the court decided to grant bail to the accused.

The order may be read here:

In the past as well there have been many instances of misuse of the law which the court has at times tried to rectify. The gruesome murders that have taken place in the name of protecting cows and accusing the deceased of cow slaughter are too many to name. The misuse of the law is quite rampant and it is the courts that need to step in to put a stop to such abuse of law.

On April 12, Agra Police arrested four members of All India Hindu Mahasabha, including its spokesperson Sanjay Singh, for getting an FIR registered against four Muslim men on false cow slaughtering charges on the eve of Ram Navami on March 30. On March 29, the eve of Ram Navami (March 30), Jitendra Kumar, a Hindu Mahasabha leader, filed a complaint alleging he had received information that Rizwan, alias Kalta that three others, were slaughtering a cow in a thicket near Gautam Nagar and were planning to sell the meat. On the basis of this, an FIR was filed and it was later found that the Hindu Mahasabha members butchered cows in order to instigate communal violence during the Ram Navami parade.

On March 28, Allahabad High Court asked DGP, Uttar Pradesh to remind police officers to conduct fair investigation especially in cases pertaining to cow slaughter. The court observed, “it is evident that in the instant case neither any prohibited animal or his flesh has been recovered and simply on the basis of apprehension and suspicion the First Information Report appears to have been lodged and the charge sheet has also been filed.” The court also noted that only cow dung was recovered from the spot which the forensics lab refused to examine.

In August last year as well, the Allahabad High Court observed that mere transportation of a cow and its progeny within the state of Uttar Pradesh is not a violation of any of the provisions of the UP Prevention of Cow Slaughter Act.


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