The Bombay High Court on Monday asked the Maharashtra Police to specify its plans to curb violence by cow vigilantes during Eid-al-Adha (also known as Bakri Eid) next month. The court, however, refused to issue directives on the matter to the state administration, PTI reported.

“Maintenance of law and order is the responsibility of the police,” Justice BR Gavai said. “We clarify that we are not going to frame any guidelines or rules on how the issue needs to be handled. We only want law and order to be maintained. Tell us what preventive steps you [police] will take.”

Additional Public Prosecutor Jayesh Yagnik told the court that the police had information about the five registered cow vigilante organisations in the city, and that a police helpline was adequate.

Petitioner Shadaab Patel had also suggested setting up a helpline to address cow-related violence. The court posted the matter for further hearing on August 23.

Followers of Islam sacrifice goats during this festival. There have been a spate of lynchings of Muslims and other incidents of communal and caste-based violence across the country.