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The Jammu and Kashmir High Court yesterday passed an order directing the implementation of a ban on cow slaughter and the sale of beef in the state. A Division Bench of DS Thakur and JR Kotwal JJ passed the order in a PIL filed by advocate Parimoksh Seth.
As social media outrages over the order, the fact is that the high court is not responsible for the ban.
The ban stems from a legislation that dates back to the days of Maharaja Ranbir Singh of the Dogra Dynasty of Kashmir. The Ranbir Penal Code (RPC), which is the criminal law legislation that governs the state, has been in effect since 1932. While most of the Code was drafted on the lines of the IPC, it also contains provisions deeming the killing of cows illegal.
Under the Code, the slaughter of bovine animals is a punishable offence under Section 298A. Section 298B outlaws the sale and possession of said slaughtered animal. The punishment for an offence under 298A is 10 years imprisonment.
And it is the implementation of this rule that Parimoksh Seth has sought in his PIL filed before the court.
Speaking to Bar & Bench, he said,
“There has been a ban on slaughter of cows and other bovine animals since 1932. However, it was not being properly implemented, as people from certain districts in Kashmir were selling beef.
The Division Bench has now directed proper implementation of the RPC in all districts of the state and to take action against those who are violating the ban.”
Senior Advocate Sunil Sethi appeared for Seth, whereas the state was represented by Additional Advocate General Vishal Sharma.