GUWAHATI, June 3 - Crying foul over the recently notified new rules under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, former Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi today slammed the BJP government�s move to �interfere into the food habits� of the people.
The Environment Ministry had recently notified new rules under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, which disallows the sale of cattle � cows, buffaloes, bullocks, calves and camels � for slaughter in animal markets.
�The move shows how sensitive the BJP is to the people of the Northeast where a large section of people consumes beef. Even some BJP members in the region are opposing the move. (Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema) Khandu has himself said he eats beef,� Gogoi said.
The former Chief Minister said the Constitution gives exclusive powers to the states to make laws regarding livestock, and hence the BJP government�s move is destroying the country�s federal system.
�On one hand they say saab ka saath saab ka vikas and on the other they interfere in the food habits of a particular section of people,� Gogoi said, adding that the move would also hit the rural economy.
�Now they are banning cow, buffalo slaughter. Tomorrow they will ban poultry and fish as well. The intention (of bring the new law) is not to protect the animals. They are unnecessarily trying to create tension,� he said.
Gogoi also questioned the silence of Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on vital issues and wondered if it was out of fear of the Central leadership.
�He has been a mute spectator on all issues. A CM should be bold enough to take a stand on issues. On one hand he vows to protect the State�s mati, jati and bheti and on the other he rolls out the red carpet to Hindu Bangladeshis. Isn�t this double standards?� Gogoi asked.
The Congress leader also said wrong government policies and demonetisation have spelt doom for the country�s economy with the GDP growth rate sliding to 6.1. �Investment has slowed down. They (BJP) have forgotten their poll promises and are now doing divisive politics to divert the attention of the people. Instead of acche din, people are now experiencing kharab din,� he added.