BJP MLA Slams CM Parrikar Over Beef Shortage in Goa

INDIA - Outspoken BJP MLA and deputy speaker Michael Lobo had the BJP-led coalition government squirming on Wednesday when he claimed that the government had failed to crack down on cow vigilantes.
calendar icon 27 July 2018
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Mr Lobo said that “interference from so-called gau-rakshaks” (otherwise known as cow vigilantes) had led to the closure of the government run abattoir, which had deprived Goa’s beef-eating population.

“Some so-called cow protectors are standing at the border and blocking the beef that is being brought into the state. I think we have failed on this,” Lobo told the Goa legislative assembly during the ongoing monsoon session.

According to The Times of India, Mr Lobo, who represents the Calangute constituency, said that the shortage of beef in the state was also affecting the tourism sector.

ldquo;Tourists who come to Goa come to eat beef. For our feasts there is a shortage of beef,” Mr Lobo said.

Earlier this year, beef traders in Goa alleged that cow vigilante groups on the border were threatening their trade and their lives.

With Christians and Muslims forming one-third of the population, Goa consumes around 20-25 tons of beef every day. The only government-run abattoir, Goa Meat Complex, has been non-functional, due to a litigation forcing traders to bring in beef from Karnataka.

“If we have a Goa Meat Complex, why is it not functioning? Are we not serious? If we do not want beef to come from Karnataka and Maharastra, then certified cattle in Goa should be slaughtered at the government meat complex. It has to start,” Mr Lobo said.

While accepting that his words would disturb some people, the deputy speaker also said that he respected gau-rakshaks.

“I respect them (cow vigilantes) but at the same time there are people in Goa in large numbers, the Christian and Muslim community and other who eat beef. You cannot stop that,” Mr Lobo said.

Former chief minister Pratapsingh Rane also spoke on the issue of cattle.

“We love cows in India but it is the worst treated animal. Countries that consume beef look after their cattle in a much better way,” Mr Rane said.

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