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Written by: Ayushi Singh (Intern)
Edited by: Anubhav Yadav (Content Head & Developer)

In order to assure legitimate cattle trading within the country, especially from Western Bengal to India’s north-east countries, the high court of Calcutta has asked the West-Bengal State Government to draught a standard operating procedure.

Justice Rajasekhar Mantha heard a writ petition, alleging that several police staff had stopped his truck and also seized and arrested his cattle during his business in the movement of livestock from West Bengal to Meghalaya. The petitioner therefore requested relief from the Court, since it was a true business. To that the State’s counsel argued that the State has no issue to cattle traffic in principle but was directed to be duplicating cautious in the face of prevalent cases involving livestock smuggling of state police staff.

The counsel of the State of Ayan Banerjee submitted that, in principle, the State could not object to the trade of supplying cattle to Meghalaya by the petitioner, but since the State of West Bengal has a border with the country, and the large incidents of bovine smuggling require State police double vigilance at different sites. Debjani Ghosal, counsel of the petitioner, claimed that when these animals were being transported from western Bengal to Meghalaya, several police stations on the way stopped the Petitioner’s vehicle and confiscated the bovine animals, and arrested the staff who were involved. The Advocate added that Petitioner is a true merchant in the country for which documents are presented, which indicates that the Petitioner provides livestock to Meghalaya government.

“In that view of the matter, the Inspector General of Police, North Bengal being the respondent no. 3 herein in consultation with any other necessary authorities, shall prepare a Standard Operating Procedure for the purpose of strict compliance by any trader of cattle and livestock from West Bengal to other States and within the country.”

While considering the petition, Justice Rajasekhar Mantha was of the view that the State should adopt a Standard Operating Procedure not to impede genuine cattle commerce, in particular between West Bengal and North-eastern States of India. “The Inspector General of Police, Northern Bengal, may, at his discretion, permit the petitioner, pending the creation of the Standard Operating Procedure, to transport his bovine to Meghalaya State subject to compliance with all the requirements necessary.”

The Court however has directed the State, if preferably within a period of three months of the date of communication of that order, to finish the above Standard Operating Procedure as quickly as possible. The Court further decided that, in order to prepare a Standard Operating Proceedings, the petitioner should be treated themselves as a representation of the petitioner and that the petitioner should file all additional papers and inputs. The Court expects the Standard operative procedure, preferably within the three months after the date of notification of this order, to be concluded as soon as feasible.


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