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  India   Politics  30 May 2017  Mamata Banerjee slams beef ban, will challenge it

Mamata Banerjee slams beef ban, will challenge it

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : May 30, 2017, 1:03 am IST
Updated : May 30, 2017, 1:03 am IST

She did not rule out the possibility of building a consensus on the issue among the Opposition parties across country.

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee (Photo: PTI)
 West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee (Photo: PTI)

Kolkata: Hitting out at the Centre for banning the sale of cattle for slaughter at livestock markets, West Bengal state chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Monday declared that her government will not accept the decision.

“We won’t accept the Centre’s decision. It is unconstitutional, undemocratic and unethical. We will challenge it legally at a proper forum or the Constitution bench. We will consult the advocate-general in this matter,” Ms Banerjee said at a press conference at the state secretariat. Nabanna.

Ms Banerjee minced no words to remark that the ban was a deliberate attempt to encroach on the state government’s jurisdiction thereby destroying the federal structure of the country. “This is a subject on the concurrent list. We are neither accepting it nor we are bound to abide by the rules of the Centre in this matter. How can they bulldoze? Who are they to decide who will eat what and who will wear what?” the chief minister  said lashing out at the Centre.

She did not rule out the possibility of building a consensus on the issue among the Opposition parties across country.  

Ms Banerjee also questioned the timing of the notification as Ramzan month has just started. “This is the month of Ramzan. Why was this law decided at this time?”

Batting for democracy and secularism, the chief minister urged the Centre government not to implement a law in this manner without consulting the state.

“Items in the concurrent list is an area where the opinion of the states are as important as that of the Centre. Government may come, the government may go. Democracy should continue. Secularism should stay,” she asserted.  

Quoting article 246 of the Constitution, Ms Banerjee said the legislature of the state government has exclusive rights to make power to make laws in such matters (list II of schedule VIII). She added that many states in India have weekly livestock markets and they  operate them near borders to attract traders from neighbouring states. “It is ridiculous that the Centre wants to decide where the markets will be held,” she remarked.

Ms Banerjee is not the only Opposition chief minister to criticise the Centre’s decision. The Left government in Kerala has already rejected the Union government’s move describing it as “fascist”.

Senior members of Council of Leather Exports, CLA Tanners Association and Indian Leather Products Association claimed that the Centre’s amendment was “legally null and void”.

“How can they come up with a unilateral notification on a state subject? We demand the Centre immediately withdraws or amends the notification, or we will have to tread the legal path “ CLA Tanners Association general secretary Imran Ahmed Khan said.

Tags: mamata banerjee, ramzan
Location: India, West Bengal, Calcutta [Kolkata]