In a rare convergence, Kerala’s ruling Congress-led UDF and CPI-M headed LDF opposition, at loggerheads on several issues, have come out against the NDA Government’s move to impose a nation-wide ban on cow slaughter and beef, dubbing it as an encroachment on personal liberty.
Some BJP leaders in Kerala, one of the largest beef consuming states in the country, have sought to justify the Narendra Modi Government’s move by citing environment and health grounds.
Leaders of the Congress and the CPI (M) have come down heavily on the Centre on the issue, terming it as a "sign of increasing encroachment of personal liberty and democratic freedom".
The Prime Minister’s Office has recently sought Law Ministry’s opinion on whether the Centre could circulate the laws on cow slaughter as enacted by some states, including Gujarat, as model bill among other states for their consideration for similar legislations there.
KPCC General Secretary and MLA P C Vishnunath said Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has already announced in the state Assembly that the Union Government’s push for a ban on cow slaughter will not be implemented in the state.
"This is a political campaign of the Sangh Parivar. The people of Kerala reject outrightly the BJP’s move to impose this kind of fascist agenda on them," Vishnunath told PTI.
M B Rajesh, All-India President of the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), the youth wing of the CPI (M), said the BJP government was trying to communalise even the food habits of the people of the country. He said a ban on beef will deprive people a source of food which is relatively cheaper.
"This is a political move by the Fascist forces. The communal forces are trying to politicise even the food habits of the people of the country. We appeal to all democratic organisations to come forward to fight against this draconian move," Rajesh, an MP and CPI-M state committee member, said.