Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh: On March 28, the Allahabad High Court issued notice to the Government of India, the State Government, and others in a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) against the illegal meat shops and slaughterhouses operating in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad district. The Allahabad High Court’s bench comprising Chief Justice Pritinker Diwaker and Justice Saumitra Dayal Singh has sought responses from the respondents by May 3, 2023, Live Law reported.
The Ghaziabad Councillor Himanshu Mittal moved a PIL before the Allahabad High Court on the issue of state-wide non-compliance with the Food Safety and Standards Act, Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, Environment (Protection) Act, MOEFCC guidelines, and various Supreme Court orders.
Furthermore, the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI), Animal Welfare Board of India, Commissioner of Food Safety, Ghaziabad Municipal Corporation, UP Pollution Control Board, and Central Pollution Control Board have been added as respondents to the PIL.
The petitioner’s counsel, Advocate Akash Vashishtha, submitted that out of 3000 meat shops and slaughterhouses operating in Ghaziabad, only 17 are licensed u/s 31 of the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006, and only 215 meat establishments are registered with the Food Safety department under the law and only 62 Improvement Notices have been served to them. Furthermore, he submitted that only 5 licenses had been revoked in the last 11 years.
He submitted that none of the meat shops or slaughterhouses in Ghaziabad has received the mandatory ‘Consent to Establish and Operate’ u/s 25 of the Water Act. He cited the Supreme Court of India’s verdict in Laxmi Narain Modi v. Union of India (2014), where the Supreme Court constituted a committee on slaughterhouses in each state, and averred that such a committee is completely defunct across the state.
On March 23, Uttar Pradesh (UP) Police attached former BSP MLA and meat mafia Haji Yakub Qureshi’s properties worth Rs 9 crores as part of the UP Government’s action against meat mafias in the state.
Also Read: Uttar Pradesh: Police attaches former BSP MLA Haji Yakub Qureshi’s illegal properties worth Rs 9 crores
Earlier, he and his son were arrested on January 6 and charged with running an illegal meat processing factory Al Fahim Meatex Private Limited, in Allipura Village on Meerut-Hapur road. It is pertinent to note that Haji Yakub Qureshi was a Minister in Mayawati-led Uttar Pradesh Government.
On March 30, 2022, police raided Al-Faheem Meatex Private Limited in Allipura village where an illegal meat processing business was going on. During the raid, police recovered 2,460 Kilograms of meat worth five crores and an FIR was registered against 17 people including Yakub Qureshi, his wife Sanjeeda Begum and sons Imran and Firoz.
Also Read: BSP leader Yakub Qureshi and his son were arrested from Delhi for operating an unlicensed meat business