Meat Ban: Why did the controversy erupt only this year, asks Uddhav Thackeray

Mumbai(PTI): Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said that the controversy over ban on the sale of meat during the Jain festival of ‘Paryushan’ has ended as far as his party is concerned, but sought to know why it erupted this year.

Uddhav Jains

“What was the special thing that happened this year, that there was a controversy,” Uddhav told reporters, after meeting a delegation of Jain community leaders at his residence ‘Matoshree’ in suburban Bandra.

“Those who came to meet me today said they have not made the demand (to extend the number of days for meat sale ban during Paryushan. We (Sena) have said what we wanted to say and did what we wanted to do. However, we should take care to ensure this controversy does not drag on,” he said. “Impure thoughts during Paryushan is also violence of a kind. I have put a full stop to this issue from Shiv Sena’s side,” he added.

The meat sale ban has been implemented since 1964. Till 2013, the ban on meat sale during Paryushan was restricted to two days. Last year, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation increased it to four days.

Uddhav further said that nobody should try to “force anyone’s religion on the other”. “We should limit our religion to our respective homes. Doors of Matoshree were never closed for Jain and Gujarati brethren nor will they be closed in future,” he said.

His son and Shiv Sena Youth Wing leader​ Aaditya Thackeray also tweeted that the matter had been amicably discussed between members of the Jain community. “They both agreed that anything more than the two day shut down of slaughter houses was overstepping and that each festival should be enjoyed by everyone in Mumbai equally, out of choice and goodwill.”

Meanwhile, activists of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) on Sunday put up a non-veg food stall outside a Jain-dominated housing society here to protest against the meat sale ban during ‘Paryushan’ festival. MNS party workers shouted slogans and publicly ate chicken outside ‘Jai housing society’ in suburban Vile Parle. They also displayed banners which read “Yes, we will eat non-veg”.