Chennai: Against the background of ensuing Bakrid festival and arrival of camels to Tamil Nadu to be offered for Qurbani, the Animal Welfare Board of India has said that the desert animal cannot be slaughtered for food.
In an advisory to all state governments, the AWBI, quoting a Food Safety and Standards Authority of India directive said, "this (the directive and stipulations in it) effectively means that camels cannot be slaughtered for food at all".
As in several other places, camels have begun arriving in Chennai from neighbouring Andhra Pradesh to be offered for Qurbani.
The Animal Welfare Board, a statutory body under the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests, directed the state governments to strictly implement animal welfare laws to stop illegal killings of animals and to take action against offenders.
"During transportation of animals for the festival, the owner of the animals do not follow animal welfare laws and transportation of animal rules."
Such violations result in cruelty to animals which is a punishable offence under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1960, the Board said.
Animals, in a municipal area, should be slaughtered only in a licenced slaughter house. Also, there are other stipulations like a fitness certificate of a veterinarian that an animal was fit for slaughter, the Board said quoting relevant rules.
The AWBI advisory has been addressed to Chief Secretary, the Director General of Police and Director of Animal Husbandry Department in all the states.