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Thursday, June 8, 2023

Bharatiya government removes Halal from the red meat manual

The Bharatiya government has removed the word ‘Halal’ from its Red Meat Manual issued by the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA).

The excerpt that was tweeted by UpWord read, “All animals must be slaughtered by Halal method in the presence of holy men approved by the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind as per Islamic Shariyat, for certification”.

Soon, the government had issued a clarification as to why the term Halal and the process is mentioned in the APEDA Red Meat Manual.

APEDA said that there is no condition imposed by the Bharatiya government and that the government does not mandate that only Halal Meat has to be exported. However, it is the requirement of the majority of countries that import the meat. It also said that Halal Certification agencies are accredited directly by the respective importing counties and no government agency has a role in it.

Online knowledge platform Upword, which had brought the issue into the public domain, has tweeted thanking the government and Union Minister Piyush Goyal saying “We thank the govt for taking our constructive criticism seriously and removing portions from the APEDA’s Med Meat Manual that endorsed the halal method. Such responsiveness goes a long way in building trust and strengthens the nation. Really appreciate it”.

The government has now removed the word Halal from its Red Meat Manual thereby ending the monopoly of Muslims who employ Halal as against the jhatka method of slaughtering adopted by Hindu and Sikh meat sellers.

Certification of food products on religious lines like Halal had so far allowed Islamists to have a stranglehold over the non-vegetarian as well as vegetarian food products. This made it compulsory for companies like Patanjali as well to acquire the halal certification from various Muslim certification bodies. These organizations charge hefty fees ranging between 500 rupees and 5,000 rupees per item.

According to a study by Adroit Market research, the global halal market is worth more than 4.54 trillion dollars which is significantly higher than the GDP of Germany, Bharat, or the United Kingdom. It is estimated that the global halal meat industry would touch the 9.71 trillion dollar mark and Islamists monopolizing the industry.

Despite the fact that in Bharat non-Muslims consumers outnumber Muslim meat consumers, the majority is being forced to consume Halal food. The Muslim community has monopolized the non-vegetarian food industry thereby forcing lower caste and lower class of Hindus to go unemployed.

Hindupost had earlier highlighted how the Halal industry is deeply discriminatory against non-Muslim meat-eaters.

The multi-million Halal industry running on money spent by people from all faith systems including atheists employs only Muslims and discriminates in employment based on religion. The poor Hindu butchers are rendered jobless because customers in metro-cities prefer to buy commodities online and the online meat vendor serves only Halal thereby employing only Muslims. Employment discrimination is not limited to the process of slaughtering alone.

The religious diktat mandates every person involved in the industry, be it in the processing and packaging steps, to be a Muslim. This concentrates the accumulation of wealth to people of only one faith system, i.e, Islam, and denies non-Muslims, including Hindus (most of whom in the meat business are under-privileged SC/ST and OBCs) and Sikhs an income opportunity.

The Halal certification is not a Bharatiya phenomenon. It is an Arabic concept that is being pushed into the Bharatiya market where only 15% of the population is Muslim. The remaining non-Muslims are forced to finance a Muslim-only industry for their food. In fact, the Halal monopoly has already made inroads into the non-meat food products as well.

In view of all this, the move by the government is a welcome first step, and though this doesn’t indicate that the government is doing away with Halal meat considering that the Islamic countries importing meat would demand only Halal meat, it at least opens a window of opportunity for Hindu and Sikh meat-sellers as well.

(Featured Image Source: OpIndia)

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