Appoint police officers to prevent cow vigilantism by Oct 13: SC to states

The Supreme Court order asking states to appoint in every district a senior police officer who will be responsible for preventing violence in the name of cow protection will have to be complied with by October 13.

States will also have to compensate victims of violence in the name of cow protection, Hindustan Times reported.

The court, while proposing measures to stem what it called growing violence by so-called cow protection groups, earlier this month had said the nodal officers would have to ensure that vigilantes do not become a law unto themselves. It had given states a week to comply with the order. The court had also asked states to list steps they would take to step up security on highways, where cow vigilantes have stopped vehicles carrying cattle and attacked people.

Focus on cow protection, especially by vigilante groups, has risen since the BJP-led government took power three years ago, and several states ruled by the party made laws to punish cow slaughter.

The cow vigilantes have targeted cattle and meat traders, transporters and even farmers walking their animals — violence that has killed several people, mostly in BJP-ruled states. Critics accuse the vigilantes of using cows as a pretext to target Muslims and Dalits.

 

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