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Assam cow protection law leads to beef crisis in Meghalaya

GUWAHATI

A cow protection law that Assam enforced less than a year ago has led to an acute beef crisis in Meghalaya.

The hill State’s main cattle market has also been closed due to non-availability of the animal for consumption. The market is at Khanapara bordering Assam.

According to the Khasi Jaintia Butchers’ Association, the Assam Cattle Preservation (Amendment) Act, 2021, affected the supply of cattle to Meghalaya. This has forced beef sellers to purchase cattle from the black market at thrice the normal rate for a cow.

Prior to the enforcement of the law, a cow cost ₹30,000.

“The Assam government has stopped the entry of cattle into Meghalaya and our government is doing nothing to address the problem,” association general secretary Generous Warlarpih said.

‘No one has got challan’

He trashed the Meghalaya government’s claim that it was issuing challan to the local meat traders. “No one has received this challan so far,” he stated.

Mr. Warlarpih stressed that the association has no issues with the Assam cattle law. But the Meghalaya government should take steps to ensure cattle from West Bengal and other States were allowed to be transported through Assam, he said.

An Assam government spokesperson explained that the law sought to check illegal transportation of cattle but consignments meant for other northeastern States were usually not stopped after the verification of documents.

But the meat sellers claimed cattle transported illegally were being smuggled to Bangladesh along the Assam and Meghalaya borders.


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Printable version | May 6, 2022 3:58:49 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/assam-cow-protection-law-leads-to-beef-crisis-in-meghalaya/article65387974.ece