BENGALURU: With Ugadi festival round the corner and people preparing to celebrated Varshada Todaku (Hosa Todaku) the following day, Hindu groups have yet again launched a statewide campaign against halal meat.
Last year, a similar campaign had been launched and there was huge response to it, with crores of rupees worth of jhatka eat being sold ahead of the festivities. Buoyed by the success of the campaign, Hindu groups have now renewed the call to forego halal meat and instead opt for jhatka meat. They also plan to create awareness on the importance of jhatka meat.
“Last year, there was tremendous response to the campaign and 90 per cent of halal meat was boycotted due to the support of the people. There is a monopoly of one community over meat trade in the country which is worth about Rs 2 lakh crore annually”, said Mohan Gowda of the Hindu Janajagruthi Vedike.
Further, he said, “In Hindu tradition, a day after Ugadi, a non-vegetarian feast is arranged, which is called Hosa Todaku, wherein meat is offered to Kalabhairava, Kali and other Gods as ‘naivedya’ and also offered to the ancestors. We should not make any offerings to God which has already been presented as an offering. In Hindu customs, there is a bar on torturng an animal when it is being slaughtered. Research has showed that halal meat is not good for health and can cause diseases”.
Mohan Gowda said the Jamait Ulema-e-Hind and a few other organisations, which issue halal certification, have raked in Rs 5,000 crore in the state alone. “This money is being used to provide legal aid to those accused of terror charges. The halal certification is being used for anti-national activities and is dangerous for the sovereignty and security of the country. Hence, halal certification should be banned”, he said. “Also, jhatka meat should be made available during Ugadi and proper arrangements like slaughter houses and markets should be made as several Hindu communities have been deprived of livelihoods”, he added.
Giving details about the campaign since it was launched in 2022, social activist, film producer and distributor Prashant Sambargi, said, “This is not a halal vs jhatka issue. Late Food and Civil Supplies Minister Umesh Katti and the department commissioner held a meeting and a notification was issued to online food and groceries delivery apps, B2B and B2C businesses in March 2022, that they should supply jhatka meat to consumer who prefer it. The Vishwa Hindu Parishat (VHP) state president has filed a writ petition in the Karnataka High Court to ban religious food stamping. We wrote several letter to the authorities concerned and due to our consistent efforts, e-procurement portals of government agencies in Karnataka have removed the word halal from the portals for supply of meat to railways, hostels, military or prisons”.
“Apart from this, we are disseminating information on where Hindavi meat is available and training people in jhatka slaughter. A Hindi book brought out by the Hindu Janajagruti Samithi has been translated into English and Kannada. In the coming days, we will take up a campaign to make non-halal products available to consumers at supermarkets under the Consumer Protection Act”, he said.