Meat shops will not be allowed to open during Navratri: SDMC mayor

New Delhi: Meat shops will not be allowed to open from Tuesday during Navratri till April 11, South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SMDC) Mayor Mukesh Suryan said and asked the municipal commissioner to ensure strict adherence of his directives.

This is the first time when the civic body has asked for closure of meat shops under its jurisdiction during Navratri which is being observed from April 2-11.

An official order in this connection is yet to be issued.

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Suryan told PTI on Monday that an official order regarding closure of meat shops will be issued soon and such shops “will not be allowed to open from Tuesday”.

In a letter to SDMC Commissioner Gyanesh Bharti, Suryan said “religious beliefs and sentiments of devotees are affected” when they come across meat shops or have to bear the foul smell of meat on their way to offer daily prayers to goddess Durga during Navratri.

He said during the period of Navratri, devotees of goddess Durga observe fast for nine days with a strict vegetarian diet as well as abstain from the use of non-vegetarian food items, alcohol and also certain spices.

During these days, people forgo even the use of onion and garlic in their diets and the sight of meat being sold in the open or near temples makes them uncomfortable, Suryan said in the letter.

“Keeping in view the sentiments and feelings of the general public, necessary directions may be issued to the officers concerned to take action for the closure of meat shops during the nine-day period of the Navratri festival extending from April 2, 2022 to April 11, 2022,” Suryan wrote.

He also said some meat shops dump waste in gutters or beside the road, which the stray dogs feed on and is not only unhygienic but also an appalling sight for passerby.

“Such events can be restricted if the meat shops are closed down during the period of Navratri festival in the area under the jurisdiction of SDMC and the closing of meat shops near temples is also necessary to maintain the cleanliness in and around temples,” Suryan wrote.

There are around 1,500 registered meat shops in the jurisdiction of the SDMC.

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