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Beef Ban Volunteers: Bombay HC Struck down self-styled Gau Rakshaks

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Mumbai: A 12-member committee headed by Justice CS Dharmadhikari, a retired judge of Bombay High Court has rejected 2,000 applications who wanted to be Beef Ban volunteers.

All the applications received under the “special drive” launched in May, to be appointed as honorary animal welfare officers “to serve as eyes to monitor the beef ban” in the state, reports The Indian Express.

It has been specified in the notification that the applicants should not have any “religious or political affiliations”.

Despite this, many applicants are members of various Hindutva outfits, including VHP, Bajrang Dal, Durgavahini, Ram Sena, Hindu Sena, Shiv Sena, Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.

Interestingly, at least 60% of the applications had affiliations to existing gaushalas and are associated to gau rakshan samitis.

“We have decided to return all the applications to the animal husbandry office in Pune. Orders have been passed to ensure that none of them are considered,” a committee member told The Indian Express.

“On the validity of these applications, there is no question. They stand unauthorised, and should not have been collected. These applications, as of today, are worthless. Suitable instructions will now be sent to all offices. The chairman made it clear that he had not asked for these applications, nor was any circular issued on the criteria for selection. Veterinary officers should not exceed their jurisdiction, said Bijay Kumar, principal secretary, Animal Husbandry Department.

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