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Gujarat government withdraws bill to stop movement of stray animals in urban areas SEDI News

The bill made it mandatory for the cattle owners to obtain a license to keep cattle and a provision of jail term was made for their animals found wandering as strays. The Maldhari community was agitating since the bill was passed.

(Symbol Photo: Reuters)

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Gandhinagar: The Gujarat Assembly on Wednesday unanimously withdrew the bill, which had proposed to restrict the movement of cattle on urban roads and public places, due to heavy protests by cattle owners just ahead of the assembly elections. This bill was passed by the assembly several months ago.

Governor Acharya Devvrat had returned the ‘Gujarat Cattle Control (Rearing and Movement in Urban Areas) Bill’ to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led state government a few days ago with a request to “reconsider it and make necessary changes”, whose Later it was withdrawn by the Assembly.

The bill was passed by the Assembly in March this year. The bill made it mandatory for the cattle owners to obtain a license to keep cattle and a provision of jail term was made for their animals found wandering as strays.

On the first day of the two-day assembly session on Wednesday, Urban Development Minister Vinod Moradia moved a motion to withdraw the bill, which was adopted unanimously. The proposal was supported by the ruling BJP as well as the opposition Congress.

Before voting on the motion to withdraw the bill, Speaker Nimaben Acharya informed the House that the bill was returned by the Governor with a message on September 17.

Congress MLA and Maldhari community leader Raghu Desai termed the BJP’s decision as flawed and said that there are already laws for animal control in the corporation areas of Gujarat. “But the BJP had brought the bill before the assembly elections to woo the urban voters,” he said.

The move to withdraw the bill has been taken after members of the Maldhari community organized a ‘Mahapanchayat’ on Sunday (September 18) demanding repeal of the bill and suspension of milk supply on September 21. The decision was made.

The community had been agitating ever since the bill was passed by the state assembly on March 31 this year. Apart from the stray cattle bill, the community is also troubled by the campaign to catch stray cattle being run by the municipal corporations after the order of the Gujarat High Court.

This is the second setback for the Gujarat government after the Par-Tapi-Narmada river link project was withdrawn a few months ago due to protests from tribal communities.

According to the report, there have been 4,860 incidents of attacks on humans by stray animals across Gujarat in the last 10 months. At least 28 people have been killed in these attacks.

In August last, former Deputy Chief Minister of Gujarat Nitin Patel was injured in a collision with a cow during the ‘Tiranga Yatra’ in Kadi town of Mehsana district. His left leg was broken.

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Categories: India, Politics, Special

Tagged as: Cattle-Rearers, Governor Acharya Devvrat, Gujarat Assembly, Gujarat Govt, News, politics, stray cattle, Stray Cattle on Roads, The Wire Hindi, urban areas

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