Stepping up his attack on the ruling CPI(M) in Kerala for organising beef festivals, state BJP chief Kummanam Rajasekharan today dared the Left leadership to hold such events in New Delhi to protest the Centre’s ban on sale of cattle for slaughter. “I wish to ask Sitaram Yechury and Prakash Karat…Do you have the courage to organise beef fests publicly in front of AKG Bhavan in New Delhi? Why are you not doing it there,” he said here. “Such things can only happen in Kerala,” Rajasekharan told a meeting organised by the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) to protest the “anti-people” policies of the CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF) government in Kerala, which completed a year in office this month.
Beef fests were held in various parts of Kerala to protest the ban on sale and purchase of cattle at animal markets for slaughter. Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan has criticised the ban and shot off a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi saying imposing restrictions on the cattle trade will affect the country’s secular ethos and millions of livelihoods.
Meanwhile, senior Congress leader AK Antony today termed as “unfortunate” the recent slaughter of a calf by Youth Congress workers in public view in Kannur district to protest the ban. “This is not part of the Congress culture,” the former defence minister told reporters.
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Three Youth Congress activists were yesterday suspended for the public butchering of the calf, a day after party vice-president Rahul Gandhi condemned the act.
Meanwhile, the opposition, Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF), continued its attack on the BJP for the Centre’s notification banning the sale and purchase of cattle for slaughter at the animal markets.
Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Ramesh Chennithala said the people should resist the Centre’s attempt to “dictate” their food habits.