The recent crackdown on illegal slaughter houses in Uttar Pradesh led by the BJP government seems to have emboldened the fringe groups in other states. Gurugram is the latest to follow the trend.
Around 200 Shiv Sena men from the Haryana unit on Wednesday asked more than 300 chicken and meat shops apart from shops serving non-vegetarian food in Gurugram to remain shut for next 9 days for Navratri.
The protestors have also sent threat notices to the shop owners asking them to keep their shops closed on all Tuesdays in future or else be ready to face dire consequences.
Those shops given notice include a KFC outlet in Gurugram. Shiv Sainiks forced out the constomers in KFC and also served notice to the multinational food chain to close the outlet. "We have asked customers of KFC to cooperate with us in vacating the place. We have forced employees to turn electricity off inside and pull shutters down for public," said Gautam Saini, the president of Shiv Sena Gurugram.
Meanwhile, a KFC spokesperson said, "As a responsible corporate citizen, KFC operates in compliance with the laws of the land. We have not received any notification from the authorities on limiting operations during the Navratras or Tuesdays. We would like to reiterate that KFC has the highest respect for the cultural and religious beliefs of all communities and believe that consumers are free to make choices and decisions."
The alleged Shiv Sena men targeted shops in Gurugram's busy Sadar Bazar area on the right side of Delhi-Gurgaon expressway on Tuesday.
On Wednesday morning, they turned to the shops on the other side, including DLF, Sushant Lok, Sohna Road and Badshahpur areas.
"We have served notices to hotels, dhabas, eateries serving non-vegetarian food, apart from raw meat and chicken shops owners to keep shops shut during Navratri and on Tuesdays. One will have to face consequence in case he does not follow instructions," said Ritu Raj, the general secretary and spokesperson of Shiv Sena Gurugram wing.
A Gurgaon police spokesperson said no complaint was received so far but action would be taken if shops were being forced shut in violation of norms.