“Beef Must Not Be Consumed Where Cows Are Revered”

Assam Chief Minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma stated that the government will protect cows in the state by taking all legal measures within the scope of the constitution

Defending the proposed 'Cow Protection Bill' in Assam, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma raised the controversial topic of beef consumption, urging people not to do so in Hindu-majority places. Wikimedia Commons

By- Khushi Bisht

On May 22 Jagdish Mukhi, the governor of Assam, declared during his welcoming speech on the opening day of the assembly that a new bill to save and protect cows in the state of Assam would be introduced in the next session. Mukhi stated delight that the Assam government is planning to introduce the ‘Cow Protection Bill’ in the upcoming session.

While addressing the first session of the 15th Assam assembly, Mukhi stated, “We all revere and worship the cow. It is a sacred animal as it nurtures us with life-sustaining milk. In fact, it is a symbol of the divine bounty of the earth. I am happy to inform you that my government plans to introduce the Cow Protection Bill in the next assembly session.” 

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Jagdish Mukhi also took to Twitter to inform people about the Cow Protection Bill, mentioning the generosity of a cow and its significance in Hinduism. He tweeted, “For a Hindu, the cow is a sacred animal. It is a symbol of life and should be protected.”

“She gives more to civilization than what she receives,” he further stated.

 

Defending the proposed ‘Cow Protection Bill’ in Assam, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma raised the controversial topic of beef consumption, urging people not to do so in Hindu-majority places. He said that his government forbids the consumption of beef in areas where cows are revered. He further stated that the government will protect cows in the state by taking all legal measures within the scope of the constitution.

While many mistook the declaration as a proposal to outlaw cow slaughter in the state, as numerous BJP-run states have done in recent years. The opposing party “All India United Democratic Front” (AIUDF), was concerned that the proposed measure could incite mob lynchings similar to those seen in northern India’s cow belt.

However, this is not the case. The proposed bill, according to reports, has no intention to restrict the slaughtering of any animal or the consumption of any form of meat in the state. Instead, it proposes a full prohibition on the transport of cattle outside of the state, as well as a halt to the slaughtering and consumption of cows in places where they are worshipped. 

“Cow is our mother. We will not allow cows to be smuggled in from West Bengal. In those places where cows are worshipped, beef must not be consumed. It does not mean that everybody has to give up and change habits all of a sudden,” said Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. 

He added that cow slaughter must be abolished. He also urged the opposition party members to join the administration in advancing the state’s development. “We have to do our work where sensitivity is there. When the AIUDF MLAs support the Cow Protection Bill, a new Assam will be built. Today AIUDF MLA Karimuddin Barbhuiya has taken an oath in the name of Allah in the Sanskrit language the language is a symbol of culture and civilization and it is a good sign,” he further stated.

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Many departure sites along the porous India-Bangladesh border in Assam encourage illegal cow smuggling. Two Indian states, West Bengal and Meghalaya, both of which share a border with Bangladesh, are also used for cattle smuggling. Referring to the cattle smuggling from Assam to West Bengal and Meghalaya, CM Sarma stated, “We can prevent smuggling to Bangladesh and our police teams have regularly nabbed smugglers. But there was no law to prevent movement to other states such as Meghalaya and West Bengal.”

Assam Chief Minister also claimed that he had witnessed Darul Uloom’s (Islamic seminary) pronouncements from Lucknow that beef should not be consumed in Hindu-populated areas several times. He received strong support from BJP MLAs as well as other party leaders. The decision to pass legislation prohibiting cattle trafficking didn’t shock the inhabitants of Assam, and it was enthusiastically supported.