The Bharatiya Janata Party government in Karnataka is discussion a petition to reintroduce a ban on the sale and possession of beef in the state, a minister told The News Minute on Friday.

“No decision has been taken but we are discussing a petition made by the BJP Cow Protection Cell on Friday,” Karnataka Minister for Tourism and Kannada and Culture CT Ravi said. On Thursday, the Cow Protection Cell of the BJP had submitted a memorandum to Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa requesting a ban on cattle slaughter.

The memorandum said the BJP government had in 2010 tried to ban beef, but the governor had rejected the bill. “Now that the BJP has come to power, the 2010 legislation must be strengthened even more,” BJP Cow Protection Cell Chief Siddharth Goenka told The News Minute. “The government must consider this memorandum and introduce the bill in the upcoming Assembly session.”

The 2010 Karnataka Prevention of Cow Slaughter and Cattle Preservation Bill had been passed in the Assembly after a long debate. The then leader of Opposition Siddaramaiah had vehemently opposed the legislation, labelling it draconian, unconstitutional and “against secularism”. Siddaramaiah also tore up a copy of the bill in the Assembly.

However, the then-Governor HR Bhardwaj did not give his assent to the bill.

There has been a partial ban on cow slaughter in Karnataka since 1964. However, under the 1964 legislation, only the slaughter of cows and she-buffaloes was banned. The 2010 bill tried to ban the slaughter of bulls and he-buffaloes too. However, when the Congress government came to power in 2013, it dropped the bill, the Hindustan Times reported.

“We have formed a team to study laws passed in different states and we will introduce a Bill soon,” CT Ravi told the daily. “In doing so, we will be following Mahatma Gandhi’s call to stop the slaughter of cows and the Constitution.”