On the day of Ram temple consecration in Ayodhya, several BJP ruled states directed food delivery companies not to deliver non-vegetarian food.
In states including Uttar Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, customers were not able avail delivery service for non-vegetarian dishes on major apps.
Zomato, one of the leading food delivery companies in the country, abided by the government order.
Many users, after finding the unavailability of non-vegetarian food on the app, took the matter to social media expressing their discontent over the government’s authoritarian move to put restrictions on people’s food choices.
In addition, government authorities in many BJP-ruled states prohibited the sale of alcohol and meat, and also issued circulars to keep slaughterhouses closed.
According to The Economic Times report, another food delivery platform Swiggy had communicated with their client restaurants to comply with the UP government’s statewide ban on the sale of meat, fish and liquor on the Ram Mandir event day.
“In accordance with this mandate, Swiggy will be switching off all non-veg items on your menu on January 22… These items will be switched on again on January 23,” the message read.
Moreover many restaurants decided not to serve meat dishes.
“We sought clarifications and have been advised by the food commissioner to avoid the sale and service of non-vegetarian food as the sale of meat in butchery shops is already prohibited for Monday,” Varun Khera, head of the National Restaurant Association of India’s Uttar Pradesh chapter, told The Economic Times.
In Maharashtra, despite any official ban in the state, the Bhiwandi Nizampur City Municipal Corporation in Thane district asked shops selling chicken, mutton and fish to remain closed on Monday.
Netizens debated the severity of the crisis faced by democratic principles in the country, as a majoritarian event powered by Hindutva imposed a burden of obedience on the citizens as a whole.
The controversial ‘Pran Pratishtha’ rituals took place on Monday, at the half-constructed Ram Temple on the site of the demolished Babri Masjid in Uttar Pradesh’s Ayodhya.
The consecration ceremony was led by Modi, RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat besides other priests and dignitaries.
Several bureaucrats and celebrities rallied to join the event.
The temple stands where the Babri Masjid, which was torn down by a mob of Hindu nationalists on December 6, 1992, earlier stood.
The construction began after the Supreme Court of India on 09 November 2019 ordered the entire land to be allocated for the temple, granting amnesty to the perpetrators of the demolition.