The four legal slaughterhouses in Ghaziabad witnessed a major dip in operations in the last couple of days as transporters and suppliers have stopped supplying animals fearing attack from vigilante groups.
The abattoirs located in Ghaziabad’s Dasna and Masuri areas are, however, hopeful that directions from the state government will improve the situation in the coming days.
Those running the abattoirs informed government officials that it has become difficult to bring in livestock and even transporters were not ready to transport consignments in the present situation.
“During meetings and visits to plants, they told us that production has suffered majorly. However, we assured that things will improve. During inspections, we have directed the units to provide us CCTV recordings of the past one month. This will include the footage of the entire procurement and production cycle. This is to ascertain the quantity and whether the facilities have been maintaining required standards or not,” said Gyanendra Singh, additional district magistrate, Ghaziabad.
However, the unit officials also said that the recent announcement by state government that they were not targeting the valid licenced units was a welcome step.
“People were fearful initially. Since chief minister’s recent statements have come and he has said that those having valid licences would not face problems, the situation will improve. Officials have also inspected plants and we showed them the entire facility. However, the suppliers are still afraid that vigilante groups may hamper transportation of livestock. Our production is barely 50% at present but we hope that this will improve in coming days,” said Intekhab Alam, general manager, Eagle Continental Foods in Dasna.
“We hardly have 10-15% production at present. Our suppliers are fearful and not taking risk as they hardly earn Rs 100-500 per animal. They are being targeted on roads and animals are caught. As a result, they have stopped supplies. Our pending orders have also suffered and got delayed,” said an official from another unit, requesting anonymity.
According to official figures, the four integrated slaughterhouses and meat processing units in Ghaziabad have a sanctioned capacity of 2,258 livestock (buffaloes) and another 200 goats per day. Apart from this, the district also has presence of five food (meat) processing export units, duly approved by the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA), with a total sanctioned capacity of 527 metric tonnes per day.
Although closure of illegal slaughter houses in Ghaziabad was a major issue of the BJP in the recent assembly elections, now even the legal slaughterhouses are feeling the heat. The four slaughterhouses in Ghaziabad’s Dasna area deal in buffalo meat, which is primarily exported to Gulf countries.
Slaughtering and consuming buffalo meat is legal in Uttar Pradesh. Recently, UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath ordered a crackdown on illegal slaughterhouses and meat shops. The government has clarified that only illegal abattoirs would be targeted.
“So far, we have not targeted any trucks or vehicles as the government is acting against illegal slaughter activity. The administration and police are proactively taking interest to enforce guidelines. The government is just trying to enforce the regulations which were not enforced due to appeasement politics,” said Pinki Chaudhary, president of Hindu Raksha Dal, an outfit against cow slaughter and smuggling.