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SC’s condemn on cow vigilantism - II

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September 08, 2017

Click here for Part I

What is the issue?

Union government cannot remain silent over the violent activities in the name of cow protection, they should respond meaningfully.

Why is the issue stressed?

  • Instances of groups beating up and even killing persons allegedly suspected of transporting cattle or bovine meat have become commonplace.
  • The court had issued notices to the Centre and some states in April on a writ petition that demanded action against such cow protection groups.
  • In the few months since then, more incidents of lynching have taken place.
  • Villagers killed two persons transporting cattle in West Bengal less than two weeks ago.
  • Three persons were killed in the same State in June after they were accused of cattle theft, and so on.

What are the conduct of state over this issue?

  • In more than one State, cow ‘protectors’ have legal recognition as local laws provide immunity to them if they were acting in good faith.
  • The validity of such provisions in laws aimed at banning or regulating slaughter of animals and protecting the cow may be decided in the course of these proceedings.
  • In most cases, police register cases against the victims for slaughter or theft of cattle.
  • Typically, the administration seems eager to determine if they were engaged in cow slaughter or transportation of bovine meat than in arresting the culprits involved in murder and violence.
  • It is dubious that whether the Centre ought to take recourse to Article 256, which empowers it to issue directions to the States, to put an end to the activities of vigilantes.
  • Instead of shirking its responsibility on the ground that this is essentially a law and order issue to be addressed by the States.

 

Source: The Hindu

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