SHILLONG, March 07: The All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) MLA from Umroi and also Chief Whip of the Opposition in the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly, George B.Lyngdoh said that the Department of Animal Husbandry & Veterinary, Meghalaya has no knowledge where the cows meant to be slaughtered for meat in the State go once the Challan is issued to the traders.
He said that this turning of a blind eye by the Department clearly indicates that the State Government does not want to take any action on the high prices of beef in the State as it does not have any detailed information about the people who buy the cows and does not follow up either on where the cows are taken, which creates an opportunity for illegal trade of cows affecting the livelihood of the residents and especially the public as they do not dare eat beef anymore due to the high prices.
George Lyngdoh said that it is not only the question of illegal trade of cows which has become a source of livelihood for the many, but the danger that awaits the public is the illegal trade of raw meat, information of which he has received from markets and expressed that this illegal transport of raw meat is not persecuted or found by the Government, with no surety as to whether the meat is cow meat or buffalo meat, or if it is a cow that has been dead due to an illness which may pose a danger to the health of the consumers.
He said that at present there is no longer any hope that the Government will do anything on this problem irrespective of much discussion, and as it appears now this problem is avoided to actualize the political goal of the Central Government and Assam Government led by the BJP, to ensure that Meghalaya will not get any cow meat for consumption.
George Lyngdoh further said that the inaction of the Meghalaya Government makes them suspicious that maybe the BJP will push towards reaching the goal as it does not want to export cows to the State, and the ones which reach the State are a result of illegal trade , and when sold in the market the prices are escalated highly.
Responding to a short duration discussion, the Minister incharge of the Animal Husbandry& Veterinary Department, Sanbor Shullai said that the Department has tried to curb illegal trade of cows and will also give due importance to the issues expressed by the MLA of the Opposition.