At least two districts in Punjab – Ludhiana and Patiala – are quietly asking meat sellers to shut shop for the Jain festival of Paryushan on September 17.
Patiala deputy commissioner Varun Roojam told on Tuesday, “We have advised meat shop owners to stay shut for the Jain festival. We checked the records and these orders are issued every year. It has been a tradition in Patiala. The request usually comes from the Jain Sabha.”
Last year during the same period there was no advice to meat shops. The authorities had ensured strict implementation of the directive and most restaurants in the city had put up boards alerting customers not to expect their butter chicken and mutton rogan josh.
Ludhiana police commissioner Paramraj Singh Umranangal has already imposed a ban on the sale of non-vegetarian food items on the Jain festival and the order has been promulgated under section 144 of the CrPC, said an official spokesman said.
The orders stated that the ban was imposed as the sale of such items on the occasion may hurt religious sentiments of the people, particularly of the Jain community. The ban would be applicable at various places including hotels.
Sources said requests for such orders are issued every year in areas with high Jain population after requests from the community.
Some other district administrations seemed open to issuing such directions but they have not received requests so far. Jalandhar deputy commissioner Kamal Kishore Yadav said although he had not received a request so far, but he was ready to take it up if he got one. Similarly, Paraminder Singh Gill, Moga deputy commissioner said he had just returned from leave and would check if the orders had been issued in his absence.
(Originally published in The Times Of India)