The order came in response to a petition filed by Govansh Raksha Abhiyan (Goa) alleging illegal slaughtering of animals and an “unholy nexus between Goa Meat Complex officials and butchers who carry out illegal slaughtering of animals.”
Considering the seriousness of the issue, the bench comprising of Justices R P Sondurbaldota and U V Bakre appointed a three-member committee to look into the allegations.
The committee, comprising the Director of Animal Husbandry, Advocate Manik Thali and member of Goa Civil Services Prasanna Acharya, has been asked to submit a report by April 30.
Senior advocate Subodh Kantak and Advocate Preetam Talaulikar, appearing on behalf of the petitioners, had raised concern about the implementation of Goa, Daman and Diu Prevention of Cow Slaughter Act, 1978 and Goa Animal Preservation Act, 1995.
They had argued that illegal slaughter of animals at Goa Meat Complex was in brazen disregard of the two legislations.
In its order, the High Court stated that the “Ponda Mamlatdar is directed to immediately visit Goa Meat Complex and take inventory of the animals brought to Goa Meat Complex for the purpose of slaughter. He shall also note, along with the number and description of animals, the name of the person who has brought the animal for the purpose of slaughter.”
“The Mamlatdar shall furnish copy of inventory to the petitioners as well as to the office of the Advocate General. The Goa Meat Complex is directed not to return custody of any of the animals to any person until further orders. The petitioners have offered to feed the animals during the interim period.”
“Goa Meat Complex shall permit the petitioners to bring the cattle feed to its complex for the purpose of feeding the animals. The Ponda police is directed to give assistance, if necessary, to the committee as well as the Mamlatdar. The petitioners are at liberty to remain present at the time of inventory,” the order stated.