The Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) is all set to unveil Ghazipur Meat Processing Plant with a trial run starting from Wednesday. Mr Vijender Gupta, chairman, standing committee, said that a team of eight experts from Germany was already providing training to the MCD staff as well as outside professionals. "Around 60 butchers are being trained in handling the new equipment. The trial run will be held as part of training,' he said.

More than four years after it was first conceptualised, the Ghazipur slaughterhouse

Animals used by the leather industry in India are transported to states where they can legally be killed. Forced to walk through the heat and dust for days without food or water, many of the animals collapse. Handlers pull the cattle by ropes through their noses and twist their necks, horns and tails or rub chilli peppers in their eyes in order to keep them moving.

After four years of monitoring by the Supreme Court, the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) on Tuesday said the modern Ghazipur abattoir, which has missed many a deadline, would be ready by May 20 but the apex court gave it an additional 10 days. Appearing for MCD, additional solicitor general Amarendra Saran informed a Bench comprising Justices Ashok Bhan, S B Sinha and A K Mathur that the project would be ready by May 20.

The Gujarat Government after succeeding in getting favourable verdict from the Supreme Court on the ban of cow slaughter in the state earlier has got a further boost with the apex court also upholding its notification banning slaughter of bulls and bullocks and sale of beef. A Bench of Justices Arijit Pasayat and P Sathasivam upheld the December 11, 1989 notification of the Gujarat Government banning the slaughter of bulls, bullocks and other animals and sale of their meat. As a result, the Bench dismissed an appeal of Abdulsattar Yousufbhai Qureshi and other butchers challenging the notification, issued by the state government under the Gujarat Essential Commodities and Cattle (Control) Act, 1958. The Bench passed the verdict in consonance with the apex court's 2005 verdict upholding the ban on slaughter of cows. The butchers had filed an appeal in the apex court after the Gujarat High Court had dismissed their petition on the ground that the government had imposed "reasonable restriction' for drastically reducing the slaughter of bulls and bullocks and trade of their meat. In the 2005 verdict, the apex court had said that since there was adequate availability of the cattle feed resources in the state, the question of striking down the "total ban' on the slaughter of even old cattle for scarcity of fodder would not arise and there was no reason for "disrupting' it. "Above being the position, this appeal is without merit and deserves dismissal which we direct,' the Bench in its fresh judgement said.

The delay in completion of formalities for receiving a Central grant of Rs 19 crore for the construction of a modern slaughterhouse in the state capital could lead to money getting lapsed as it may be diverted to some other state. Though the union ministry of food processing had agreed in principle to give a grant of Rs 19 crore for the construction of a modern slaughterhouse but there has been an inordinate delay on part of the state government in signing the MOU. It has been conveyed to the state that in case the MOU is not signed by February 29, the Rs 19 crore for Himachal would be diverted for other projects in Andhra Pradesh. Sources in the local municipal corporation (MC) informed that the file for signing of the MOU had been pending in the state secretariat for the past several months. "We have urged the senior officials to process it so that the deadline of February 29 could be met and the money does not lapses,' a senior official said. It has been learnt that the Centre has already made up its mind that in case the MC does not sign the MOU by the end of this month, the money would be diverted for some projects in Andhra Pradesh. Officials say that the delay was caused due to the announcement of early elections. Efforts are being made to sign the MOU in time. The Rs 25 crore modern slaughterhouse project had been pending since 1994 due to paucity of funds. It was only after the union ministry of food processing agreed to provide Rs 19 crore to the local MC that the possibility of the project coming through increased. Infact, the MC has also identified a piece of land near Boileauganj, where the slaughterhouse is to be made. Interestingly, the MC veterinary doctor has even proceeded on a two-month long training to Japan with regard to management and functioning of the modern slaughterhouse while the project seems to be facing an uncertain future. The need for a modern slaughterhouse in the state capital has been felt for a long time but paucity of funds was the main problem. At present the slaughterhouse is located in the Krishnanagar locality of the town and the entire animal waste is being dumped into the nullah. Being located in a heavily populated area, the residents have time and again demanded the shifting of the slaughterhouse to another location. The construction of the modern slaughterhouse will enable proper disposal of the animal waste.

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