Tamil Nadu

High Court extends stay on cattle trade rules till July 7

Centre’s Counsel had sought time to file counter affidavit against two PILs

The Madras High Court Bench here on Wednesday extended its interim stay on the operation of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulations of Livestock Markets) Rules of 2017 notified by the Centre for 10 more days.

The rules banned the sale of bulls, bullocks, cows, buffaloes, steers, heifers, calves and camels for slaughter in places categorised under the rules as ‘animal markets.’

A Division Bench of Justices A. Selvam and N. Authinathan extended the stay till July 7 since a Central Government Standing Counsel had sought time to file a counter affidavit to two public interest litigation petitions, one challenging the Constitutional validity of Rules 22(b)(iii) and 22(e) alone which banned sale of cattle for slaughter in animal markets and the other challenging the entire rules framed for regulating animal markets.

On May 30, another Division Bench of Justices M.V. Muralidaran and C.V. Karthikeyan had granted the stay for a limited period of four weeks and directed the Centre to file its counter affidavit by then.

‘Definition so wide’

While one of the petitioners, S. Selvagomathy of Madurai, had challenged the two specific provisions alone, the other petitioner, B. Asik Dagi Bava, had contended that only the State government and not the Centre had the authority to regulate animal markets. In her affidavit, Ms. Selvagomathy had pointed out that the definition of the term ‘animal market’ in the rules was so wide that the officials could cite it to ban sale of cattle for slaughter in any place as they wish.

The term had been defined to mean a market place or sale yard or any other premises or place to which animals were brought from other places and exposed for sale or auction.

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Printable version | Feb 27, 2020 2:23:51 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/high-court-extends-stay-on-cattle-trade-rules-till-july-7/article19166450.ece

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