05 December, 2020

A Meaty Issue! Cattle Smuggling To Bangladesh Robs Beef Off North-East's Plate

Traders want legalisation of cattle transportation as smugglers lure local traders to boost business by 'feeding' Bangladesh

A Meaty Issue! Cattle Smuggling To Bangladesh Robs Beef Off North-East's Plate

In 2015, BJP leader and Union minister Kiren Rijiju had famously rebu­ked a party colleague for suggesting that those who eat beef should go to Pakistan. “I eat beef, I’m from Arunachal Pradesh…can somebody stop me?” Rijiju had said in res­ponse to Mukhtar Abb­as Naqvi’s comments. Four years later, India’s Northeast is running short of beef. Not because of the ruling BJP’s clampdown on cow slaughter, like in the rest of the country, but due to rampant smuggling of cattle to Bangladesh.

Beef is a staple­—kosher as well despite the raging debate over it—in the Northeast, especially in the Christian-majority Meg­halaya, Mizoram and Naga­land. In Arunachal Pradesh too, beef is consumed by almost all the tribal communities, besides the large Muslim population in Assam. An estimated 70 per cent of the beef comes from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan and Gujarat to the Northeast. The rest is sourced loc­ally. The eight NE states need more than 1.5 lakh kg of beef a day.

Beef has not yet...



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