The Centre on Monday asked the Supreme Court for more time to report back on the progress in modifying the controversial cattle slaughter ban rules. “Everything in totality is being considered,” it said.
The rules ban the sale of cattle for slaughter in livestock markets. Hearing a bunch of petitions challenging the rules on July 11, a Bench led by Chief Justice of India J.S. Khehar had recorded a submission made by the Centre that a Madras HC’s stay on the implementation of the rules was applicable across the country.
But the July 11 order itself had subsequently come under challenge. Animal rights activist Gauri Maulekhi filed an application asking the SC to clarify its order. Ms. Maulekhi contended that the High Court had only stayed a provision of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules, 2017, regarding slaughter and not the entire gamut of rules and its twin — The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Maintenance of Case Property Animals) Act, 2017. However, the Centre had intervened with assurances that the Environment Ministry was having a re-look at the rules and “nothing would happen” in the meantime.
Additional Solicitor General P.S. Narasimha said the Centre would revisit the rules in the light of the public furore it had caused and fresh rules may be notified possibly in August 2017.
The court scheduled the hearing on August 4.