The Supreme today issued a slew of directions for regulation, development and modernisation of slaughter houses across the country and asked all state governments to form committees to ensure that abattoir rules are implemented up to the grass root level.
A bench of Justice KS Radhakrishnan and Justice Dipak Misra also asked the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to write to all state governments about its guidelines for slaughter houses and file a compliance report within six weeks.
The bench passed the order after going through the minutes of the meeting of a committee headed by the Ministry of Environment and Forest secretary, in which it was agreed that CPCB will initiate action against all slaughter houses which are not meeting the norms and implement the abattoir rules through state pollution control boards (SPCBs).
The court was told in the meeting, it was also discussed that even SPCBs have the legal power to close abattoirs.
The court was hearing a petition, which was filed in 2003 and alleged that slaughter houses operating across the country were violating various laws relating to the environment and the cruelty against animals.
The bench, which favoured finding out "modern method" for slaughtering animals, asked the state governments to form within a month a committee under the chairmanship of the secretary of their Urban Development Department and comprising representatives from various departments like health, animal husbandry, labour, food safety, state pollution control, animal welfare board, police, Panchayati Raj and local self-government.
The bench also accepted various measures agreed in the meeting of the committee headed by the MOEF secretary on April 26, 2012 relating to the functioning of the slaughter houses.
It agreed that there was a need to identify and prepare a list of all slaughter houses located within the local self government (municipal corporations, panchayats etc) area and for calling reports from district magistrate or deputy commissioner and district food safety inspector on the condition of the slaughter houses and also on compliance of the relevant laws by them.
The court said the state committee would also be tasked to recommend modernisation of old slaughter houses and to relocate them outside the residential areas.
The court also accepted that the state committee would look into the measures for dealing with solid wastes, water and air pollution and for preventing cruelty to the animals meant for slaughter.