Cow Vigilantism Unacceptable, State Governments Should Prevent Such Incidents, Says Supreme Court
Cow Vigilantism (Photo Credits: PTI)

New Delhi, July 3:  Terming cases of violence caused in the name of cow vigilantism as a state issue, the Supreme Court on Tuesday reserved its verdict on pleas seeking directions to formulate guidelines to curb such violence. The Apex Court said no one can take the law into their hands.  The Supreme Court bench also warned against linking mob violence to religion or caste and said that "a victim is a victim".

The Apex Court also put the onus on the states to ensure that such cases of violence do not take place.  A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said this was a law and order issue and each state has to be responsible.

According to a PTI report, the bench said it will pass an order on the pleas. During the hearing, the bench observed that the instances of vigilantism were actually mob violence, which is a crime.

The Apex Court in September last year had directed all 29 states and seven union territories (UTs) to take steps to stop violence in the name of cow protection and asked for the appointment of officers who would keep an eye out on "vigilante groups".

The top court had sought a response from Rajasthan, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh governments on a plea seeking contempt action for not following its order to take stern steps to stop violence in the name of cow vigilantism.

Reports inform that the contempt petition has been filed by Tushar Gandhi, the great-grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, saying the three states have not complied with the top court order of September 6 last year.