The Haryana government will impose a complete ban on the sale of beef in any form in the state, a minister said on Saturday.
"The ban covers canned beef also, which was legal during the tenure of previous (Congress) state government. The state government is engaged in framing a stringent law to clamp a complete ban on cow slaughter that will be presented in the (ongoing) budget session of the Haryana Vidhan Sabha," Agriculture and Animal Husbandry Minister OP Dhankar said here.
The BJP government in Haryana, headed by Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar, has a majority in the assembly and the proposed bill is all set to be made into law.
Dhankar said that the "Gau Sanrakshan Avam Gau Samwardhan" law, which is being framed after studying the related laws in different states, would be more stringent.
"It would have provision of 10 years’ imprisonment if found guilty of cow slaughter. Action would also be taken against the driver of the vehicle carrying beef and the vehicle would be impounded," he said.
Dhankar clarified that there was no move to book people under section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code for cow slaughter.
"The news, being telecast by some TV channels, that under the new law a case would be registered under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code against the person found guilty of cow slaughter is wrong. There will be no such provision in the law. The law would only aim at the protection and promotion of cows," he said.
There are about three lakh cows in 400 "gaushalas" (cow sheds) across the state. Apart from this, about 1.5 lakh are stray cows and 1 lakh cows are being reared by people in their houses.
"There is a proposal to set up cow reserves for these 1.5 lakh stray cows for which land is being identified. Cow reserves or sanctuaries would be set up in any district of the state adjoining Rajasthan," he added.