J&K Beef Ban: HC Puts Ball In Govt's Court, Says Making Laws Not Its Job

16 October 2015
The Indian Express
Mir Ehsan

Srinagar: Pointing out that making laws was the legislature's prerogative and not the judiciary's, the Jammu and Kashmir High Court Friday set aside both the petitions on the beef ban and directed the state government to come up with a law on the issue that is within the constitutional framework and causes no inter-religious conflict. The 25-page order by the full bench of the court, comprising Justice Muzuffar Hussain Attar, Justice Ali Mohammad Magray and Justice Tashi Rabstan, reads, 'The government in view of observations made in the order shall have to consider reviewing existing laws and take the policy decision within the framework of the constitution, and ensure that no inter-religious conflict takes the place amongst the people of state.' The order further states the court in view of its delineated area of functioning has no power to legislate laws. 'It's the function of the state legislature. The court cannot further direct the state government to legislate or enact a law in particular manner.' The order clarified that the court can neither direct legalising the law nor tell the state to make laws permitting the slaughter of any kind of animal. 'The state always takes the call on such issues,' it said. Last week, the Chief Justice of the High Court constituted a three-member bench to address the beef ban issue, which had snowballed into a major political controversy in the state. Two petitions challenging the beef ban had been filed in the Jammu bench and the Srinagar bench of the High Court.