The Jammu & Kashmir High Court issued orders on Wednesday imposing ban on sale of beef in the state and directing the police to strictly implement the ruling.

The ban is reportedly the reiteration of more than 150-year-old law under the Ranbir Penal Code (RPC).

The high court division bench of Justice Dhiraj Singh Thakur and Justice Janak Raj Kotwal asked the Director General of Police to ensure that appropriate directives are issued to all SSPs, SPs and SHOs of districts and police stations in the state to take strict action against those who do not abide by the ruling. 

The HC ruling came in the wake of a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by Advocate Parimoksh Seth against cow slaughter in the state. Seth claimed in the PIL that slaughtering or killing of bovine animals were an offence punishable under Section 298-A and possession of such slaughtered animal an act punishable under Section 298-B of the RPC, The Kashmir Monitor reported.

Under section 298A, a guilty may face 10 years imprisonment and fine, while imprisonment of one year along with fine is applicable under section 298B, IANS reported.

The bench further observed that Kashmir Divisional Commissioner has not filed an appropriate response to the alleged smuggling, slaughtering and sale of bovine animals in Kashmir and asked him to file a response.

The Jammu & Kashmir High Court's move comes five months after Maharashtra government implemented the beef ban law that was introduced in 1976 to prevent slaughter of cows as the animal is considered sacred in Hindu religion.