India City clears vegetarian restaurant on highways | Food Issues


New Delhi, India – Officials in Ahmedabad have ordered the demolition of a vegetarian restaurant on its main highways – a fourth city in the western Indian state of Gujarat to do so in recent days.

In a statement on Monday, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation said it would clear vegetarian restaurants on the city’s main streets and within schools, colleges and religious centers.

Devang Dani, chairman of the town council’s planning committee, told ANI news agency that the implementation of the plan would begin on Tuesday.

The ban came a few days after town councils in Gujarat’s Rajkot, Bhavnagar and Junagadh cities, led by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on the right, did the same.

Buyers flock to the market between Teen Darwaza and Bhadrakali Temple in front of the Diwali Hindu festival in Ahmedabad. [Sam Panthaky/AFP]

Gujarat, one of India’s richest countries, is home to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who served as prime minister for nearly 13 years before winning the 2014 elections.

Authorities in Vadodara and Rajkot also ordered traders and retailers to cover up vegetarian foods, including eggs, saying they “could harm Hindu religious sentiments”.

It said that the smoke emitted by these sources could also be harmful to human health.

“The practice of displaying meat, fish, and eggs in the market may have continued for several years but it was time to end it,” said Vadodara Municipal Corporation executive committee chairman Hitendra Patel, according to local media reports.

Gujarat Prime Minister Bhupendra Patel on Monday said the ban was not “a question of vegetarian and vegetarian diets”.

“People are free to eat whatever they want. But the food sold at the grocery store should not be harmful and the grocery store should not obstruct traffic, ”he told reporters.

Gujarat BJP spokesman Yamal Vyas said the election was taken by the town’s offices and not by his party.

“It is not the idea of ​​the BJP. It is a decision of the municipal council … The whole party has not taken any action on this issue,” he told Al Jazeera.

“The only thing is that all these shops should not be a traffic jam … We refuse food that is not very clean.”

Opposition Congress says the BJP seeks to “disrupt public interest” on major issues, including unemployment and rising prices.

“The BJP has failed to deliver on its promises to the people – whether for work or for clean water. The main purpose of the BJP is to create tensions by launching unresolved issues,” Gujarat Congress spokesman Manish Doshi told Al Jazeera.

Mr Doshi said the ban on vegetarian food in the cities of Gujarat was a “joy of elections” by the BJP to promote religious divisions in the state.

“It should be left to man to eat, drink, and clothe. It is a personal decision and the government should not force people to do so. These [ban on non-vegetarian stall] it’s a BJP election idea, “Doshi said.

“It is a threat to our democracy.”

Election elections in Gujarat, a country controlled by the BJP for more than 25 years, are set to take place next year.

Vegetarian pastures, especially in BJP-controlled countries, have faced many challenges from the party as well as the Hindu groups associated with it.

Shamshad Pathan, a politician from All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) in Gujarat, told Al Jazeera that the election would hurt the poor and called it a “secret” part of the BJP for the benefit of multinational companies.

“Most of the Gujarat vendors who sell vegetarian food are Muslims, Dalits or Adivasis. [Indigenous]. This is to follow and to benefit large corporations, “Pathan said.





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