The Madras High Court on Thursday declined to grant permission for camel slaughter in Tamil Nadu observing that, "at present we cannot have a situation where such camel slaughtering is permitted especially in the absence of any facilities for it".
"There is no facility in Tamil Nadu for proper slaughtering of camels, where it is not permitted," the first bench comprising Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice Mahadevan observed on petitions for and against slaughtering of camels.
After perusing the affidavits filed by the Union of India and the additional affidavit filed by the Tamil Nadu government, the bench said the mode and manner of transport of animals has also been set out by referring to different rules, but there are also rules applicable under different provisions under different Central enactments, which would have to be taken into consideration, including Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (slaughterhouse) Rules 2001 (PCA) as amended in 2010.
The affidavit made a categorical assertion that Section 28 of the PCA-1960 does not support sacrifice of animals.
"Destruction of animals is allowed for food of mankind only and not for sacrifice purpose," it said.
It also submitted that the Food Safety and Standards (Food products Standards and Food Additives) Regulation 2011, already issued a notification prohibiting camel meat as food.
It further prayed for a direction to state governments to enforce PCA and the rules made there under both for prevention of illegal transport and slaughtering of animals.
The additional counter affidavit filed by the state government also sought to rely on the same provision of section 28 of the PCA.
The bench which perused both the affidavits in its order said "we may only add here that the admitted position that there are no camels available in Tamil Nadu and thus a comparison cannot be made of areas where camels are found easily".
The bench which directed all the parties to the case to file a short synopsis running not more than three pages each, in its order said "we are of the view that the matter should be set down for final hearing but in the mean time in view of the stand of Central Government and the provisions of the Central Act at present, we cannot have a situation where such camel slaughtering is permitted especially in the absence of any facility for it".
The bench then posted the matter for further hearing to September 17.