Says such restrictions essential to maintain basic hygiene.
Mumbai: The Bombay high court on Tuesday passed an order on a bunch of petitions and held that goats and sheep cannot be slaughtered in residential flats during Bakri-Id.
However, the court allowed the slaughter of these animals in housing societies after seeking permission from society as well as the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) and it also directed the civic body to designate a community space for carrying out such activity.
The bench said that societies falling under one kilometre of community spaces and religious plots mentioned in the BMC policy would not be allowed to slaughter animals in their society premises. It said such restrictions were essential to “maintain basic standards of hygiene”.
The division bench of Justice S.C. Dharmadhikari and Justice G.S. Patel said, “While we do not completely restrain the granting of permission, we will direct that no permissions should be granted if the applicant’s society is located within a reasonable one km walking distance from a community space for slaughtering (including a religious slaughtering space).”
Dealing with the issue of sacrificing animals such as sheep and goats inside residential flats, the bench observed, “It is impossible to maintain hygiene and sanitary conditions if slaughter of animals is permitted within individual flats.”
It further said, “In a city that is densely crowded and congested and where typical residential apartments are small, we do not believe it is possible to make effective arrangements within a residential flat.”
The bench was hearing two petitions filed by local Non-Governmental Organisations (NGO) Jiv Maitri Trust and Viniyog Parivar, challenging civic body’s decision to grant temporary no-objection certificates to several housing societies for the sacrifice of sheep and goats in their premises during festival or under special circumstances including Bakri Id. The high court in the past had directed the BMC to formulate policy on this issue.
The petitioners have contended that The BMC’s policy violated the environmental and animal welfare laws.
However, during hearing, BMC’s counsel Anil Sakhre, argued that such slaughters were permitted as per civic body’s rules and it was regulated by the specific policy that imposed conditions on the area for such slaughters. Mr Sakhre said it was a religious matter and the BMC could not accept the petitioners’ argument that such slaughter be restricted to the abattoir located in Deonar area.