By Aqib Ali
New Delhi: The Supreme Court has imposed Rs 25,000 in costs on Jammu and Kashmir government for non-compliance of its order regarding disposal of animal wastes and ante-mortem and post-mortem inspection of meat animals in the state.
Similar costs were also imposed on Arunachal Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Nagaland and Chandigarh.
“In view of the fact that necessary compliance has not been made by these states, we impose the cost of Rs 25,000 (Rupees twenty five thousand) on each of the states and Union Territory to be deposited with the Supreme Court Legal Services Committee within a period of four weeks,” a division bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and NV Ramana said. The amount shall be utilized for Juvenile Justice issues, the bench added.
The bench was hearing Public Interest Litigations filed by NGOs Common Cause and People for Ethical Treatment of Animals in 2001 and 2004 respectively.
Common Cause, in its plea, had sought enforcement of standards laid down by the Bureau of Indian Standards in IS 8895:1978 regarding the disposal of animal wastes and slurry and IS 1982:1971 regarding ante-mortem and post-mortem inspection of meat animals.
The PIL raises issues relating to slaughter houses across the India.
The bench, in February this year, had asked the Secretary of Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution to inform senior lawyer K Radhakrishnan as to whether the standards that have been laid down require “any review or update and/or modification due to the passage of time.”
With regard to the BIS Standards, Additional Solicitor General Pinky Anand stated that she requires some more time with regard to finalization of the BIS standards and to take into consideration of the report of the Central Leather Research Institute as well as the draft notification that has been prepared. “One last opportunity is granted for this purpose,” the court said.
Counsel for one of the petitioner submitted that adequate steps have not been taken to prevent “cruelty to animals” in slaughter houses. He has submitted a three page Chart for compliance in this regard.
“Additional Solicitor General will ensure that this Chart is circulated to all the States and Union Territories,” the court said. Prior to this, the court had ordered setting up of state committees for overseeing the functioning of the slaughter houses and later, it nominated the Secretary of Ministry of Urban Development as the nodal officer for co-ordinating with state committees and to obtain information from them.