SRINAGAR: A week after the J&K High Court banned the sale of beef in the border state, Mufti Mohammed Sayeed-led PDP-BJP Government has barred Additional Advocate General (AAG) Vishal Sharma from representing the Home Department, saying he had “failed” to defend the state’s stand on the beef issue in the HC.
Sources said the Law Department had taken serious note of AAG Vishal Sharma’s lack of success in defending the coalition government’s stand in the J&K HC during the hearing of a petition seeking a ban on the sale of beef in the state.
They said Vishal had not informed the Divisional Commissioner of Kashmir on time about the HC direction regarding the case.
“He also misled his seniors by not informing them about the case,” a source said.
“He has been asked to plead cases of School Education and Rural Development Departments in the High Court,” the source said.
AAG Sharma is the son of J&K VHP president Leela Karan Sharma, who had led a two-month agitation over Amarnath land row as convener of Amarnath Yatra Sangarsh Samiti in Jammu in 2008. A Division Bench of the state High Court comprising Justice Dhiraj Singh Thakur and Justice Janak Raj Kotwal banned sale of beef in the state last week.
The judgment came in response to a petition filed by BJP functionary Parimoksh Seth in 2014. Parimoksh, who was appointed state Additional Advocate General (AAG) by the PDP-BJP Government in April, in his petition had sought enforcement of the 1932 ban on the sale of beef in the state.
In his plea, he had stated that in spite of the fact that penal provisions of Ranbir Penal Code (RPC) making slaughtering or killing of bovine animals in J&K an offence punishable under Section 298-A, and possession of slaughtered animal punishable under Section 298-B of the RPC, bovine animals are being slaughtered in the state.
Interestingly, Parimoksh’s PIL was pleaded in court by advocate Sunil Sethi, who is chief spokesman of the state BJP.