Will Delhi’s Mayors ban onion and garlic too during Navratri?

South Delhi Mayor says municipality will strictly enforce ban on meat shops, East Delhi mayor concurs

Delhi Mayor

While not everyone turns vegetarian during the nine days of Navratri, the South Delhi Municipal Corporation’s Mayor Mukkesh Suryaan has decided they do and ruled that all meat shops in the area will be shut down. Soon after the order made news, scores of shops in markets of the zone downed their shutters.

According to a report in NDTV, around 30 meat shops in INA market, one of the largest food markets in the city, also shut down on Tuesday morning. As was the case during the sudden lockdown when it was first imposed two years ago, this shutdown too has come without notice or warning. It most affects the daily wage earners employed at various levels in the meat and egg supply chains. According to a report by Newslaundry, if there were at least a fair warning the labourers said they would have gone home for these nine days rather than be in the city without wages.



However, South Delhi’s Mayor Mukkesh Suryaan of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has also claimed that 99 percent people turn vegetarian during Navratri. Bizarrely he while ordering this ban, perhaps the first of its kind in the national Capital, has likened it to orders “in some Islamic nations where drinking water in public is prohibited during the fasting month of Ramadan” reported NDTV. In South Delhi, this ban is on till Monday and “will be enforced strictly,” said Mukesh Suryan. According to the NDTV report, he has claimed that the move was taken “following complaints” and that “it does not violate anyone’s personal liberty.” His party colleague, BJP MP Parvesh Sahib Singh Verma, son of former Delhi chief minister Sahib Singh Verma, has supported the ban on the sale of meat during Navratri saying the other two corporations of Delhi should also follow suit. He told the media that “if Hindus respect other religions, then Muslims should also do it.”



The S Delhi Mayor, Mukkesh Suryaan told the media that “during Navratri, 99% of households in Delhi don’t even use garlic & onion, so we’ve decided that no meat shops will be open in South MCD” he added that a “fine will be imposed on violators”.



He said that “when meat is not sold, people will not eat it. We have taken this decision keeping in mind the sentiments of Delhiites. People complained to me. The fasting people were facing problems over the cutting of meat in the open. This is not a violation of anyone’s personal liberty,” reported NDTV adding that “on 8, 9, 10 April, we will also close all slaughterhouses.”  

He has already sent a letter to South Delhi Municipal Corporation Commissioner Gyanesh Bharti stating, “Religious beliefs and sentiments of devotees are affected,” and asking that “necessary directions may be issued to the officers concerned to take action for the closure of meat shops during the nine-day period of the Navratri festival extending from April 2, 2022, to April 11, 2022.” According to news reports, the East Delhi Municipal Corporation Mayor Shyam Sundar Agarwal  has also made the same demand saying “closing meat shops will make us happy during this festival”.

The ban has had multiple reactions online. Including scores Hindu citizens from across the country who shared the diversity of the faith and the meat diets adopted by many.





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