A truck carrying camel carcasses was caught in the national capital on Tuesday, just as it was entering a cold storage in West Delhi.
The truck was headed to Jagdish Cold Storage House located at Lawrence Road when it was seized by police over allegations by animal activists that it was loaded with both camel and cow meat.
The truck was immediately brought to Keshav Puram Police Station by animal rights activists from People For Animals and Dhyan Foundation and susequently an FIR was registered.
Here's all need to know:
- The seizure unearthed the secret workings of Jagdish Cold Storage which functioned as an illegal slaughter house for cattle and camels. India Today reporters entered the storage house to find carcasses -- allegedly of cows and cow-calves -- which had been freshly butchered, skinned and readied for packaging.
- "These are surely a cow-calves as you can see in the carcass, that the legs are white, the face is smaller and the skin which is still attached to the animal in bits is also white" said a villager, who owns cows and buffaloes in the village of Rampura.
- The alleged cow and camel meat were packaged under three brands -- Al-Wahid, Star 1 and Sara along with other boxes which had no branding.
- The discovery of illegal calf carcasses hanging by hooks inside the cold storage, caused an uproar among residents from the neighboring village of Rampura. They entered the slaughter house, brought out the carcasses and displayed them at the centre of Lawrence road blocking traffic from both sides.
- "We are fed-up with this cold-storage as everyday at night, truck loads filled with cows and camels are offloaded here, butchered and then packaged in the wee hours of the night. Ammonia gases are released by the storage house every night between 2:30 am and 5 am to contain the horrid stench which is caused by the rotting carcasses," said a neighbouring shop owner who did not wish to be named. "Everyone knows the illegal crimes which have been happening here, we have made umpteen calls to the cops but no action was taken, instead the cops threaten us and hush us away. This is the sad reality of Keshav Puram," said another villager from Rampura.
- The villagers demanded that police seal all three slaughter houses running in the garb of cold-storage houses. While their protest continued for more than 20 hours, the owners of the cold storages were nowhere to be found. They could not be contacted either.
- "From the size of the meat pieces and long neck pieces found in the truck seized outside Jagdish Cold Storage, it was amply clear that this was not goat or chicken, it is camel meat," Said Kirti Sachdeva, a volunteer with the Dhyan Foundation. FSSAI officials have taken samples from the seized meat, and have sent them for testing.
- "The camels were loaded from Rajasthan last week and captured in Farukhnagar, Gurugram. The truck with the animals was released yesterday and taken to Mewat where the animals were butchered and then brought to New Delhi to Jagdish Cold Storage. When we tried to enter the cold storage to seize the truck last night, the staff threatened us with huge butcher knives. This particular truck is notorious for carrying camels and cows for slaughter and was recently caught in Gurugram with 13 camels. Same truck with the same driver," said Abhishek, an activist from People For Animals.
The article was published in IndiaToday.