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Police Investigating Alleged Export of Cow Meat Under Guise of Carabeef

Nine FIRS have been filed in Bihar, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Telangana and Jharkhand on the issue in the last two months.

New Delhi: According to a report in the Economic Times, multiple complaints have alleged that cow meat is being exported from India under the guise of carabeef/buffalo meat, using fake certificates. A police investigation into the complaints is on in at least five states.

According to the newspaper, nine FIRS have been filed in Bihar, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Telangana and Jharkhand on the issue in the last two months. The police has also apparently seized as much as 1,011 tonnes of suspected cow meat, worth Rs 16 crore, during the investigation.

While India is the largest exporter of buffalo meat, the export of cow meat is banned and a criminal offence. According to the ET, meat being exported needs to be accompanied by three reports – antemortem, postmortem and laboratory report. However, in the cases under investigation, the meat only had “health certificates” provided by a government laboratory and government veterinarians who did not have the authority to issue such certificates – and none of the reports that are legally required. These “health certificates” said that the meat was “fit for export”.

Seized samples were sent to the Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) for testing and in seven out nine cases turned out to be cow meat, ET reported. The other two results are awaited.

More than a dozen export companies are reportedly under the scanner because of this investigation, and arrest warrants have been issue for some of the owners.

Responding to questions sent by the ET, the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APEDA) said complaints had been received against a “few exporters involved in illegal exports”. “As per process, APEDA has issued showcause notices to the firms (against) whom the complaints were received. In a few cases, no response has been received to the show cause notice in spite of repeated reminders.”

APEDA also said that it had “temporarily suspended” registration-cum-membership certificate of three companies. Sources told ET that this includes Delhi-based companies Vertex Agri Products and Global Food International Corporation, which are facing half a dozen cases in various states.