BJP-ruled Goa would not ban beef as it is an essential part of the cuisine of minority communities in the state, Said Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar. “Regardless of what the Centre does, Goa have minorities section between 39-40% and if it is part of their food habits, why and how can we ban it? For people especially minorities eating beef is part of their food,” Parsekar told the Media.
He also mentions that it took several years for his party to win the trust of minorities in Goa, which according to him can’t let go over the issue of consumption of beef. Minorities, who make up nearly 40% of the population, have been part of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s success story in Goa. The party grew from a mere 4 seats in the 40-member assembly in 1994, to cross the halfway mark and form the government in 2012.
According to the studies India earns $4.3 billion a year alone from the exports of beef and which is huge market potential.
The statement made by Mr. Parsekar is believed to follow the implications as it comes after BJP governments in Maharashtra and Haryana imposed blanket bans on eating and selling beef. Pasekar further added that the killing of cow will not be permitted in respect to the sentiments of Hindus. Killing of oxen or bulls is also not happening in Goa now. According to Mr. Parsekar the beef is brought from neighboring state of Karnataka and sold in Goa, the BJP government allows it, as it is a part of the food of Catholics and Muslims and should not be banned.
In Maharashtra selling of beef is already a punishable offence as they have passed the bill in the first week of March imposing a jail term of 5 years and a fine of Rs 10,000 for anyone selling or consuming beef. This trend was followed by the Haryana Government with little amendment of 50 thousand rupees fine and 3 to 5 years of rigorous imprisonment.
The BJP government had denied any political motive behind the ban on beef, and said it was in the interest of agriculture. But apparently the party has now decided not to extend the same logic to Goa. On the other side Mr. Monteiro has realsed the statement in the press saying that “The motive of the fringe elements protesting the cattle slaughter is to end beef eating in Goa. There have been increasing complaints from traders about these groups intercepting their vehicles transporting livestock, beating up their drivers and letting the cattle loose,” which seconded by Mr. Parsekar saying that “beef traders facing harassment can approach the government for protection.”
Parsekar told the press that, “As the CM, I have to take care of all people in the state including its 38 per cent minorities. Christians account for 30 per cent of the population while the remaining is from the Muslim community. It is not like they started consuming beef recently; this has always been part of their daily cuisine. How can I ban it?”