Different strokes for different folks? BJP against ban on cow slaughter in Christian-predominant Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland

Is cow slaughter a religious or a political issue for the BJP and the sangh parivar? The latter, seems to be the answer.

BJP in North east

The UP police and civic administration are busy implementing UP chief minister Yogi Adityanand’s directive to shut down illegal abattoirs with a vengeance. While the slaughter of cows and their progeny has been banned in the state for years, the targets of indiscriminate action following the CM’s order include not only slaughter houses for buffalo meat but even mutton and chicken retail shops.

But in Christian-predominant Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, the BJP is singing a different tune. The party has made it clear that it has no intention of imposing a ban on beef in these north-eastern states if voted to power in the Assembly polls scheduled for next year, according to a Hindustan Times report.

Beef is widely consumed in the three north-eastern states and the current crackdown in UP has led to people wondering whether the BJP would act similarly if voted to power in the next elections.

Scotching all speculation on the issue, the party’s Meghalaya unit general secretary David Kharsati issued a statement on Sunday blaming “groups with vested interest” for spreading rumours.

“Ban on cow slaughter like the one in UP won’t take effect in Nagaland if our party comes to power next year. The reality here is very different and our central leaders are aware of that,” Nagaland BJP chief Visasolie Lhoungu told Hindustan Times.

Census 2011 figures indicate 88% of the population in Nagaland is Christian. The corresponding figures for Mizoram and Meghalaya are 87% and 75% respectively.

The Congress party is currently in power in Meghalaya and Mizoram while the BJP is a minor partner in the Naga People’s Front-led Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN) coalition in Nagaland.

“There would be no ban on cow slaughter in Mizoram and other states in the region where there is a majority Christian population,” Mizoram BJP president JV Hluna said.

Interestingly, even in Goa where only 25% of the population is Christian as against 66% Hindus, the BJP governments continue to turn a deaf year to the demand for a beef ban frequently raised by some Hindu organisations.  



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