Hindu Extremism: BJP-led govt in India's Uttar Pradesh bans Halal-certified products
Muslim representative bodies promise to challenge the move through legal means
LUCKNOW (Web Desk) – The ruling Hindu extremist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) continues forwarding its agenda while targeting the minorities, especially the Muslims, as the authorities in India's most populous state of Uttar Pradesh have banned the production, storage, distribution and sale of Halal-certified products, including dairy, garments and medicines saying it was illegal.
However, the double standards can’t be more clear as the ban is limited to the domestic market as the products manufactured for export are exempted from the orders.
A notification issued by the state government says that bakery products, sugar, edible oil and other products which were labelled as 'Halal-certified' by the companies manufacturing them would be banned.
"Halal certification of food products is a parallel system which creates confusion regarding the quality of food items," the notification reads.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) is the country's apex body in charge of determining standards for most food products sold in the country and determines the standards food products should meet, the notification said.
Uttar Pradesh, which is ruled by firebrand Hindu monk Yogi Adityanath, who belongs to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), is India's largest and most populous state.
Both Adityanath and his government have been accused by critics of having a divisive agenda against the state's sizeable Muslim population, which they have consistently denied.
"Religion should not be brought into food. There were many items such as garments, sugar, etc which were being branded as Halal, which is against the law," state BJP spokesperson Rakesh Tripathi told Reuters on Monday.
The Uttar Pradesh government said the move also comes following complaints that alleged a potential effort to lower the sale of goods not halal certified – the claim a number of Muslim bodies have refuted as “baseless”, saying they will take “necessary legal measures” against such claims.