From the Navratri meat ban in Delhi to Gujarat prohibiting the sale of non-vegetarian food items on the streets, there’s been a lot of controversies lately as far as non-vegetarian consumption in the country is concerned. The latest to join the bandwagon is three Jain groups and a businessman seeking a ban on advertisements of non-vegetarian food, calling it an infringement of their right to privacy.
Observing that it can’t direct a ban on advertisements of non-vegetarian food, a Bombay High Court division bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta and Justice Madhav J Jamdar on Monday questioned whether such a move would not amount to encroaching on the rights of those who eat non-vegetarian food. It dismissed as withdrawn the PIL filed by the petitioners. However, the bench allowed them to file a fresh petition with better particulars.
Shree Atma Kamal Labdhisurishwarji Jain Gyanrnandir Trust, Sheth Motisha Religious and Charitable Trust, Shri Vardhaman Parivar and businessman Jyotindra Ramniklal Shah approached the Bombay HC seeking a ban on the advertisements of meat and meat products in print and electronic media.
In their PIL, they say that families of Jain community members “including their children and other vegetarian people are forced to watch the advertisements without their desire, wishes or consent, thereby infringing the right to live life peacefully, tampering upon the minds of children, teenagers and vegetarian adults by infringing upon their privacy and compelling them to watch/read about non-vegetarian foods against their own wishes.”
“If some people want to eat non-vegetarian foods, they are free to do the same but showing/displaying the non-vegetarian foods in the houses of the people who are vegetarian is not good and proper and the same affects their constitutional and fundamental rights,” the PIL stated.While dismissing the plea, the Bombay high court observed, “Is it within our jurisdiction?… This is a legislative function and the HC being an organ of the State cannot say what legislation must be passed. It is for the legislators to decide. We will only intervene if an individual’s right is infringed.”
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