The commissioner has also warned that any officer found celebrating Gatari tonight, will be booked under the provisions of Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Act, Bombay Police Act and Bombay Municipal Act.
On July 16, the commissioner issued a special circular (copy available with MiD DAY) across the city warning subordinates not to celebrate the annual festival.
In the month of Shravan (starting tomorrow), many Hindus don’t consume alcohol and non-vegetarian food. However, for reinforcement, people drink heavily the night before, to prepare themselves for the month-long road ahead. The Mumbai police are not an exemption. According to police sources, there is an old tradition in the police force in which officers slaughter a chicken or goat on Gatari and distribute the meat among colleagues as ‘prasad’.
Many animal rights activists have raised their voices against this tradition. All senior inspectors in-charge of police stations and crime units have been directed to warn their subordinates about the notice.
“Hum log ye sab unki atma ki shanti ke liye karte hain jo log police station premises me kisi karan vash mare jaate hain (we do all this to keep the souls of those who die in police custody at peace),” said a police officer. He added, “However, we are not going to celebrate Gatari in this season.”
“The department has issued a circular to all police stations and units, instructing them not to celebrate Gatari on office premises,” said Nisar Tamboli, spokesperson, Mumbai police.