Slaughterhouses can still buy animals directly from farmers, but not in marketplaces. However, most small farmers sell to local markets because slaughterhouses are far fewer and often a great distance away from farmers. And some states don’t even have slaughterhouses.
Hindu groups in India, who consider the cow holy, have long wanted to ban cow slaughter. But beef eating is more common here than many realize and it’s growing. India’s 180 million Muslims eat beef. Tribal communities, especially in the northeast prefer it, too. It’s also common among poorer, lower caste Indians, because it’s cheaper than chicken and goat.Existing animal slaughter rules – set by Indian states – reflect this diversity in diets. Some states allow the slaughter of all cattle. Some states forbid it entirely. Most allow slaughter of water buffalos for meat.
By making the rules about cruelty rather than slaughter the government – which is headed by a right wing party with close ties to a Hindu-nationalist group – is seen as bypassing state laws. “It is saying slaughter is akin to cruelty,” says Sagari Ramdas, a veterinarian who is also a member of Food Sovereignty Alliance India.Critics of the new rules see them as banning cattle slaughter through the backdoor. A direct nationwide ban could be seen as an attack on freedom of religion, they say.
Those in support of the ban insist reading anything more than animal cruelty into the law is mischief-making. Nugehalli Jayasimha, director of Humane Society International in India sees it as a “win-win situation for the animal, the producer and the consumer.” He would have preferred to see goats and chickens included in the new rules, but he says that’s more difficult to implement given the sheer number of small poultry and livestock farmers.
Source : http://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/06/30/535016207/indias-new-animal-cruelty-rules-threatens-livelihoods-and-beef-exports