Image courtesy: NDTV
On December 9, the Karnataka Legislative Assembly passed the Prevention of Cow Slaughter and Cattle Preservation (Amendment) Bill, 2020 prohibiting slaughter of cows, buffalos, and bulls under 13 years of age.
According to Bar and Bench, this Bill provides imprisonment between three and seven years and/or fine up to rupees five lakh. Other offences may invite fine up to Rs 10 lakh and a jail term of up to seven years.
Under this Bill, the term cattle has been designated as “cow, calf of a cow and bull, bullock and he or she buffalo” and their slaughter is banned as per the Indian Express. But buffaloes above the age of 13 years that are certified by a competent authority, cattle used in medical research, cattle certified for slaughter by a veterinarian to prevent spread of a disease, and the sick one’s are exempted under this new Bill.
The new Bill also prescribes new punishments for transport of cattle, sale of meat, purchase or disposal of cattle for slaughter which includes a prison term of three to five years and a fine of rupees fifty thousand to rupees five lakh.
After tabling the Bill, Prabhu Chavan, Minister for Animal Husbandry and Fisheries, said, “The Bill provides stringent punishment for violations and also provides power for search and seizure of any premises which includes vessel or vehicle.”
After the Bill was tabled in the House, cows were brought into the Vidhana Soudha (Secretariat) and Prabhu Chavan performed a puja for them. Mr Chavan told New Delhi Television, “This is the blessings of the six-crore people of Karnataka (and) of senior leaders. I thank the Chief Minister and the leaders for giving me this opportunity. This is the first time that the cow puja has been done here.”
This 2020 Bill is a revised version of a Bill that was tabled and passed in 2010 when the BJP was in power in Karnataka. However, the 2010 Bill could not come into force and was shelved in 2013 by the Congress Government as it did not receive the Governor’s assent.
Despite vehement opposition, the Bill was passed in the Assembly yesterday.