The punishment for those found guilty of cow slaughter in poll-bound Gujarat has been enhanced to life term under a more stringent law passed by the state Assembly.


With the passing of the Amendment Bill, Gujarat becomes the first state in the country to make cow slaughter punishable with a life term. Cow slaughter has also been made a non-bailable offence. The Gujarat Animal Preservation (Amendment) Bill approved by the Legislative Assembly also has a provision for 10-year imprisonment for transportation, storage or sale of beef.

The legislation, which envisages permanent forfeiture of vehicles involved in transportation of progeny of cows and beef, bans transportation of animals from one place to another during the night. The bill, which seeks to amend the Gujarat Animal Preservation Act, 1954, by introducing stringent punishments, was passed in the absence of the Congress MLAs who were suspended for a day for creating a ruckus in the House

"The Gujarat Assembly passed a cow protection bill, among d most stringent in d country, making cow slaughter a life time punishable offense (sic)," Chief Minister Vijay Rupani tweeted shortly after the passage of the bill. Assembly elections in Gujarat are due towards the end of 2017. 

Introducing the bill, the Minister of State for Home Pradeepsinh Jadeja said, "Cows do not have only a religious significance, but also have an economic significance in our society. It is utmost necessary to increase the punishment to deter those involved in slaughtering of cows." As per the bill, those involved in the slaughter of cows, calves, bulls and bullocks, would face imprisonment up to life, but not less than 10 years." In the present Act, which was amended in 2011, the maximum jail term for such acts was seven years, but not less than three years.

The bill also proposes imprisonment up to 10 years but not less then seven years for those found to be involved in transportation, sale and storage of beef. Earlier, the maximum punishment for the same offence was three years.