The mayors of two municipal corporations in Delhi have written to the civic bodies seeking that meat shops be closed during the Hindu festival of Navratri, NDTV reported.
South Delhi Mayor Mukkesh Suryaan and East Delhi Mayor Shyam Sundar Agarwal made the demands in letters to their respective municipal commissioners.
Navratri began on April 2 and will go on till April 11.
Suryaan, in his letter to the commissioner of the South Delhi Municipal Corporation, said that during the festival, devotees of goddess Durga observe fasts and avoid meat, alcohol and certain spices, according to The Indian Express.
“People forgo even the use of onion and garlic, and the sight of meat being sold in open or near temples makes them uncomfortable,” the mayor claimed. “Their religious beliefs and sentiments are also affected when they come across meat shops or when they have to bear the foul smell of the meat on their way to offer daily prayers to the goddess.”
Suryaan said that some meat shops dump waste in gutters or on roadsides and stray dogs feed on it. “It is not only unhygienic but an appalling sight for passersby,” he said. The mayor claimed that closing meat shops was necessary to maintain cleanliness around temples.
Suryaan claimed that 99% of households do not even use onion or garlic during Navratri, ANI reported.
He said that he has also written to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, requesting him to withdraw permission to give discounts on alcohol during the festival and, if possible, stop the sale of liquor during this period as well.
Last week, the Delhi government allowed private liquor stores to give discounts of up to 25%, according to PTI. On February 28, the government had told shops to discontinue discount on liquor, claiming that it was causing law and order problems due to overcrowding and unhealthy market practices.