Government Approved Laws For Protecting Cows

Cow is considered sacred by a majority of the population in India. Laws related to cows have always been a controversial topic in India (being a country of multiple religions). There are certain amendments, additions over the time and with the change of Government. The current situation holds the roots from 1994 with the introduction of Delhi Agricultural Cattle Preservation Act. The deeper insight regarding the subject topic can be read below.

History of laws protecting cows in India

The legal side and Indian politics holds a long history for laws safeguarding cows. Since Hinduism hold about 70% of the country’s religion, things related to cow has been a sensitive issue since forever.

Pre-Independence era – The phase before India became Independent had witnessed much of the cow supporters. Action against cow slaughter received the support from Arya Samaj and people like M.K Gandhi.

Post-Independence era – It was the era of Indian national congress party when India got its independence. Safeguarding the resident communities interest, the supreme court had included the laws against cow slaughter as Directive Principal of State Policy. This means that states have the power to enforce independent policy for the matter which will be valid within the state only. The penalty for the offense also had a prison term that ranged from six months with a maximum sentence of two years.

What are the current rules and laws for cow protection in India?

There are significant amendments in laws against cow slaughter now. 12 states in India has the penalty of imprisonment ranging from two years to 14 years while many others have other penalties. The Supreme court has announced the laws against cow slaughter or transportation of cows for slaughtering. Few pointers about the current situation are-

Gujarat – The recent amendments in state laws has made the state as strictest in terms of punishment.  It also has rigid laws against the selling or eating cow beef to protect the sentiments of its people.

Offense – Cow slaughter

Penalty – Life Imprisonment and fine up to 5 Lakh


Jammu & Kashmir – The state was holding the top most position in terms of punishment before the Gujarat’s recent amendments.

Offense – Cow slaughter

Penalty –  10 years of imprisonment and five times the worth (in rupees) of the cow so killed. The point to note here is that cows cost in lakhs of rupees in J&K.


Haryana – The state comes on 3rd position for penalties against cow slaughter.

Offense – Cow slaughter

Penalty – Imprisonment up to ten years and a fine up to 1 Lakh


In May’17, the Ministry of Environment imposed a ban on trading of cattle for slaughtering across all the animal markets in the country.



Cow protection is a call of duty not just for fulfilling the basic additions to the country’s Economy but since because of the holy sentiments attached to it. It is no less our responsibility to safeguard the sacred mother cow. Even in terms of humanity, how can we kill the animal which gives us food for living i.e., milk? Isn’t it surprising that the being human tag from us vanishes when sacred cow needs it the most? Let’s Think about it!

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