Mumbai: Social activists have moved the Bombay High Court demanding temporary slaughter houses in the city's Muslim-majority areas for Eid-ul-Azha to be celebrated in the last week of this month.
The petition has been filed by Awami Vikas Party president Shamsher Khan Pathan and activists Yasmin Ali Shaikh and Shamsa Zaheer Shaikh.
It is expected to come up for hearing before a division bench of Chief Justice Mohit Shah next Wednesday.
"During the three holy days of the festival, the Deonar abattoir is packed to capacity with over 2,000 large animals slaughtered there - four times its regular capacity. The existing facilities there are insufficient to handle the huge rush during the festive season.
"We feel that there should be temporary slaughter-houses in at least all the major Muslim-dominated areas," Pathan told IANS.
Due to the rush to complete the sacrifice ritual at the earliest, often brawls break out at the abattoir and many a time the weary and harried animals cause stampedes, he said.
Besides, huge quantities of waste like skin, bones and blood, generated during sacrifices also take time for disposal, Pathan pointed out.
The petition also highlights how animal rights and other activists illegally seize animals meant for sacrifice.
"Last night (Saturday), a truck carrying some large animals was stopped by political activists near Nashik and the animals were 'kidnapped'," Shaikh said.
"It was only after we spoke to DGP Sanjeev Dayal that the case was resolved. Usually, the animals are starved to death somewhere, or sold off after being declared 'dead'. For the first time in many decades, the animals taken away by activists were returned to the owners," Pathan said.
The petitioners have also demanded that the court direct the state government and local administration to permit free movement of legitimately procured goats, sheeps, oxen or buffaloes during Eid-ul-Azha.