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Updated January 7th, 2024 at 15:08 IST

Exclusive/ UP Halal Certification Row: Jamiat Ulama-E-Hind Chief Maulana Madani Welcomes Top Court's Decision

Jamiat Ulama-E-Hind chief Maulana Arshad Madani has welcomed a top court’s move on UP’s Halal ban.

Maulana Madani and Jamiat JUHF Petition Number
Maulana Madani and Jamiat JUHF Petition Number | Image:Maulana Arshad Madani Office
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On January 5, the Supreme Court of India issued notice in two pleas challenging the Uttar Pradesh (UP) government's Halal ban. The plea was filed by Jamiat Ulama-E-Maharashtra and other petitioners, challenging the ban by “prohibiting the manufacturing, storage, sale, and distribution of food products” with Halal Certification in UP. 

Maulana Arshad Madani, president, Jamiat Ulama-E-Hind has reacted to the top court’s move, saying he welcomes the decision.

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Speaking to Republic exclusively, Maulana Arshad Madani in a statement said that the Jamiat Ulama Halal Foundation (JUHF) Certification issues Halal certificates to companies by fulfilling all legal regulations.

“Before issuing the certificate, a special team of JUHF checks the product documentation, company location, and product processing unit in several stages and only after complete verification, they provide the Halal certificate,” revealed the Maulana.

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Madani said the Halal ban by the UP government is completely against the fundamental rights of the citizens. The Maulana also iterated that there is nothing illegal in it and that to deliberately declare it illegal is an upsetting move.

Maulana Madani said that the JUHF strictly adheres to the government regulations, and observes the matters as directed in the notification of the Ministry of Commerce, in which all institutions issuing Halal Certificates must be registered with NABCB (National Accreditation Board for Certification Bodies).

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JUHF is registered with this organisation. Moreover, its Halal certification system is recognised by most countries of the world. JUHF is also a member of the World Halal Food Council.

The Maulana emphasised that this matter is legal.

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The bench which heard the matter on Friday comprised Justices B R Gavai and Sandeep Mehta. 

The court, while issuing notice on the writ petition, posted the case for hearing after two weeks. It, however, refused the request of one of the counsels that no coercive steps would be taken against the petitioners. The bench said it would consider this later. The bench has also sought a detailed reply from the Uttar Pradesh government.

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The notification by the UP government on the ban on Halal products was challenged in two separate pleas by Halal India Private Limited and Jamiat Ulama-e-Maharashtra. One of the petitioners also called the notification “an attack on the followers of Islam religion”. 

Petition against FIR

The petition submitted before the bench also seeks the quashing of a first information report (FIR) registered in the Hazratganj district of Central Lucknow under sections 120-B, 153-A, 298, 384, 420, 467, 468, 471, and 505 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 on November 17, 2023 against the petitioners.

The FIR alleges the petitioners are promoting Halal products by which the companies are trying to bring about communal differences among the consumers. It also alleged that the certification of products is not limited to edibles but also products such as soap, oil, facial creams, toothpastes, etc. by which the accused persons intend to hurt the religious sentiments of the citizens in the country and cause unrest among the masses. It also alleges that the petitioners are disrupting the market of these products by promoting the use of only Halal Certified products to a particular religion.

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It was in November 2023 that the UP government banned the Halal certification in the state, claiming that it’s illegal, as it does not comply with the dos and don’ts of the Food Safety and Standards Act 2006.

“Halal Certification of food products is a parallel system, which creates confusion regarding the quality of food items and is completely against the basic intention of the said Act and is not tenable under Section 89 of the said Act,” read the November 2023 order by the UP government.

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Published January 7th, 2024 at 15:08 IST

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