Bharatiya Janata Party’s Tripura convenor Sunil Deodhar on Tuesday said that the party will not ban beef in the state as majority of the people are against the move, the Hindustan Times reported.

“This is a democracy,” Deodhar said at a press meet in Mumbai. “There are a lot of Muslims and Christians in North East, and let’s face it, a lot of Hindus there also eat beef as a matter of habit. We cannot take food off the plate for 90% of the population. It is [about] sentiments.”

People in the North Eastern states are among the top 10 most frequent consumers of beef or buffalo meat in the country, according to the National Sample Survey Organisation. In 2017, the Centre had issued a notification to ban the sale of cattle for slaughter across the country. There were a number of cases of violence against cattle traders, especially Muslims and Dalits, in the aftermath of the notification.