Mumbai, May 6: The Bombay High Court on Friday upheld the Maharashtra government’s decision to ban slaughter of bulls/bullocks in the state but ruled that possession of beef slaughtered outside the state will not be a crimil offence.
The ruling by a division bench comprising Justice A.S. Oka and Justice S.C. Gupte came on a bunch of petitions challenging the Maharashtra Animal Preservation (Amendment) Act that stipulated pel action even for possession of beef brought from outside the state. Accordingly, while slaughter of bulls/bullocks will not be allowed in the state, bringing and consuming beef of animals slaughtered in other states into Maharashtra will be permitted.
Striking down Section 5D and 9B of the Act, which makes possession of beef from animals slaughtered outside the state as a crimil offence, the judges said these sections were “unconstitutiol” and “infringe on a person’s right to privacy, which is a fundamental right under Article 21 (Right to Life)”.
The court ruled that only ‘conscious possession’ of meat of animals slaughter in Maharashtra could be held as an offence and the burden of proving this would be on the state and not on the individual. (IANS)