Allow police to raid houses for beef, says Maharashtra government

NEW DELHI: In what can be termed as a surprise move unmindful of the big controversy it had created, the Maharashtra government has moved to SC seeking revival of a law provision that made it an offence to carry or keep beef at home in the state.

Exactly year back, the Bombay HC had doused protests against the beef ban by striking down Section 5D of the Maharashtra Animal Preservation (Amendment) Act, 1995, getting approval from the President on March 4, 2015.

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The provision gave permission to any police officer to stop and search a person suspected of possessing the cow meat, bull or bullock slaughtered outside Maharashtra.

What’s more, it also empowered police to enter houses in order to carry out searches. It is worthwhile pointing out that the state had banned cow slaughter in 1976.

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In its appeal filed before Supreme Court, Maharashtra government said the HC erroneously held privacy to be a fundamental right and struck down Section 5D giving a go ahead to the police to enter homes, stop and search a person on suspicion of possessing beef.