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Ahead of the Monsoon Session from Monday, the PM asked state governments to take strict action against cow vigilantes, and cautioned against giving the issue a political or communal colour.
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked the state governments to sternly deal with those who incite violence in the garb of protecting cows, a day before the monsoon session of Parliament begins with the opposition geared up to raise the issue.
“Cow is revered as the mother in our country. Public sentiments are attached with the cow. However, people must know that there is a law to protect the cow and the violation of law is not an alternative,” Modi said, acknowledging that such violence impacts India’s image in the world.
“It has an impact on the image of the nation. State governments must deal sternly against such anti-social elements,” he said.
The PM also said, “Some anti social elements have incited violence in the name of cow protection. Those engaged in disturbing the harmony in the country are trying to take advantage of the situation,” he said at the all-party meeting convened by parliamentary affairs minister Ananth Kumar.
The monsoon session of Parliament will start Monday amid the latest round of tussle between the government and opposition over issues, including the atrocities related to cow vigilantism. Three days ago, a man was attacked over suspicion that he was carrying beef.
This is not the first time Modi spoke against the self-styled cow protection groups, but on Sunday the PM also tried to underline that it is the state government that must act against such hooligans and criminals, in a bid to deflect the possible Opposition attack on his party and government. “Maintaining law and order is the responsibility of State Governments and wherever these incidents are taking place, state Governments must deal firmly with it. The State Governments must also see to it that in the name of cow protection some people are settling their personal rivalry,” the PM said.
While he called upon all political parties to “condemn strongly the goondaism”, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad said the government will be targeted over issues of Kashmir and the border stand-off with China.
The government has closed all doors for dialogue, leading to political suffocation in Kahsmir,” Azad alleged. The parties like Left, Trinamool Congress are keen to discuss the “misuse” of CBI and the “Modi government’s vendetta politics”.
CPI(M) to take up women’s quota bill, cow vigilantism
The CPI(M) declared on Sunday it would raise the issue of cow vigilantism in the House and demand the passage of the Women’s Reservation Bill.
“Every day, the country is witnessing an incident of cow vigilantism and so many innocents are being killed in the name of cows. This issue needs to be discussed and the government should answer,” party’s general secretary Sitaram Yechury told reporters in New Delhi.
He also demanded that the Women’s Reservation Bill be passed. “Before the Lok Sabha elections, the Prime Minister had promised the passage of the Women’s Reservation Bill. Now the government should ensure it,” the CPI(M)leader said, referring to the proposed law that seeks to ensure 33% reservation for women in elected bodies.
He said in what was perhaps the shortest monsoon session in the history of Parliament, the government has listed 16 bills “apart from the so many bills pending in both the Houses” for the 14 working days of the session.