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Presidential assent granted to Madhya Pradesh’s bill for ban on cow slaughter

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By Pervez Bari

Bhopal: The long-pending Madhya Pradesh Gauvansh Vadh Pratishedh (Sanshodhan) Vidheyak 2010 has received the Presidential assent following which it has become an Act and has been published in the December 31, 2011 extraordinary gazette, according to an official spokesman.

In fulfillment of its commitment to protecting and conserving cow progeny the Bharatiya Janata Party, (BJP), ruled state government had passed the amendment Bill in Vidhan Sabha in 2010 to remove the flaws in the Madhya Pradesh Gauvansh Pratishedh Adhiniyam 2004. The Bill received Presidential assent on December 22, 2011. The Bill was forwarded to Union Home Ministry on September 3, 2010 for Presidential assent.

The Bill had also sought to obviate the difficulties and to make the provisions more stringent. With the enforcement of the amended Act now the responsibility of proving the prosecution wrong would lie with the accused in case of cow slaughter Similarly, now a guilty of cow slaughter would be liable to 7 years imprisonment instead of present 3 years and a minimum fine of Rs. 5,000 instead of Rs. 10,000, which may be increased by the court.

The amended Act provides that no person shall slaughter or cause to be slaughtered or offered for slaughter of any cow progeny by any means. Besides, no person including transporter shall transport or offer for transport or cause to be transported any cow progeny himself or by his agent, servant or by any other person acting in his behalf within the State or outside the State for the purpose of its slaughter in contravention of the provisions of this Act or with the knowledge that it will be or is likely to be slaughtered.

The amended Act also has provisions for specifying necessary actions for feeding and rearing the cow progeny.

Another specialty of this Act is that any police officer not below the rank of head constable or any person authorized in this behalf by competent authority shall have the power of entry, inspection, search and seizure and to present the case in the court.

It may be mentioned here that the state government had forwarded the amendment Bill on September 3, 2010 to the Union Home Ministry for Presidential assent. The assent was received on December 22, 2011. The amended Act has been published in the extraordinary gazette of Madhya Pradesh on December 31, 2011. Now the state government would take action for enforcement of the amended Act through a notification.

The Minister for Culture and Public Relations Mr. Laxmikant Sharma has expressed happiness over Presidential assent to the amended Bill, saying that the desire of the Chief Minister Mr. Shivraj Singh Chouhan would now be fulfilled. He lauded the efforts made by Mr. Chouhan in this regard and said that under his leadership the state government is committed to enforcing the provisions of the Act in letter and spirit.

[Pervez Bari is a senior Journalist based at Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. He is associated with IndianMuslimObserver.com as Bureau Chief (Madhya Pradesh). He can be contacted at pervezbari@eth.net]
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