July 03, 2019

Cattle Slaughter Rules: Second Round Litigation in SC

[ By Titus Manickam Rock ]

Cattle Slaughter Rules: Second Round Litigation in SC

The Supreme Court Bench of Justices S.A. Bobde and B.R. Gavai has issued notice to the Central government in a challenge to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules, 2017 (Cattle Slaughter Rules).

The Cattle Slaughter Rules passed by the Centre in May 2017 placed restrictions on the sale of cattle in animal markets. Rule 22(b) requires a person bringing cattle to the market to submit a written declaration that the animal has not been brought to the market for slaughter. Rule 22(d) requires an Animal Market Monitoring Committee to obtain a certificate from the buyer of an animal that it has been bought for agricultural purposes. Rule 22(e) prevents the purchaser from selling the animal for slaughter.

Communication is either far or irregular between the SC and the Central government on ticklish issues. On July 11, 2017, the Centre told the Supreme Court that it had received representations from various stakeholders and that necessary changes will be made after considering these representations. The Court then disposed of the petitions after recording that changes as may be introduced will be renotified by the Centre.

The Rules were also challenged in the Kerala, Bombay and Madras High Courts. The Bombay and Kerala High Courts issued notice to the Centre. The Madras High Court stayed the Rules. Now, since the Central government has not made any changes despite its assurance, another petition has been filed in the Supreme Court.

Senior Advocate Sanjay Hegde, along with advocates Rajnish Kumar Jha and Sanobar Ali Qureshi appeared for the petitioners.

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