The Supreme Court on Thursday issued notice to the Centre over the notification banning sale and purchase of cattle for slaughter at animal markets across the country after a PIL was filed by a Hyderabad-based NGO.
The court also asked the Centre to file its response in two weeks and posted the matter for hearing on July 11, 2017.
Petitioner Mohammed Abdul Faheem Qureshi, who moved the top court on June 7, 2017 has challenged the notification, saying it violates the right to free trade.
Early this month, the central government banned sale of cows and buffaloes for slaughter at animal markets across India.
A gazette notification, titled Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules, 2017 by the ministry states that no one can bring cattle to an animal market unless he or she has furnished a written declaration that the cattle will not be sold for the purpose of slaughter.
The first central regulation for cattle business allows only farmland owners to trade at animal markets. This means cattle can be sold only to a person who has documents to prove he is an “agriculturist”.
The notification covers bulls, bullocks, cows, buffalos, steers, heifers and calves, as well as the camel trade.