Life of the bovine Bharat lets its mothers die
Cow becomes troublesome for all the BJP ruling states — Gujarat, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh etc. — and now Rajasthan has also joined the league after Prime Minister Narendra Modi remarked on genuine and fake gou rakshaks. Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje created a separate ministry for cattle and its protection (Goupalan Mantralaya), which brought appraisal from every corner of the country. But recently, the media exposed irregularities and deplorable conditions of bovines at Hingonia Cow Rehablitionn Centre on the outskirs of Jaipur, which forced the Chief Minister to intervene in the incident. Rajasthan High Court’s rebuke and order for police investigation into the case, as well as demand for resignation of Jaipur Mayor Nirmal Nahata by Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Bajarang Dal created a hullaballoo inside the government. When the main opposition party Congress staged a march on the road, the government came on the back foot.
The Rajasthan High Court has cautioned the municipal corporation administration several times about the miserable conditions of the cattle in the Hingonia Goushala, which is situated in the area of Katouna on the Jaipur-Agra highway. Civil work had been done in the goushala as a result of directions by the High Court. But administration completely ignored to create proper sewages system in the goushala, as a result 80 per cent of the sewages had stopped working in the shelter. 0n July 31, 2016, for the first time ‘Zee Rajasthan’ came with a report that said: Goushala turns into a slaughterhouse. Later on, numerous national level print and electronic media houses reported the lapses in the maintenance of the shelter.
The Hingonia cow rehabilitation centre was in a poor condition after workers went on strike from July 21, 2016 over non-payment of wages. There was no one to look after the cows and rains compounded the misery as the mud and dung that was not removed turned into slush, trapping several cows. In the past few weeks, over 500 cows died.
The Rajasthan government said 8,122 cows died at Asia’s “best” Hingonia Gaushala between January 1 and July 31 this year due to ill-health and accidental injuries. On an average, 1,053 cows die every month at this very centre, while over 500 perished in last 10 days. The death rate has increased from 7.09 per cent in 2012 to 11.31 per cent in July 2016, according to statistics released by the state government. For fodder and medical care at the centre, the annual budget of Hingonia Gaushala was raised from Rs 5.19 crore in 2007-08 to Rs 10.78 crore in 2015-16. Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje asked the officials and employees of veterinary department, Jaipur Municipal Corporation and Hingonia rehabilitation to take measures to improve the situation at the cow shelter within four days. Deputy Commissioner Sher Singh Luhariya and in-charge of Hingonia Gaushala R K Sharma were suspended for negligence leading to death of cows, an official said, quoting the CM. Meanwhile, scores of cow vigilantes led by Haryana-based Rashtriya Gau Sant Gopal Das Maharaj were rounded up near secretariat while they were protesting against the death of cows at Hingonia Gaushala.
Both municipal corporation and the state government are in troubles due to the unprecedented premature deaths of cows. Even the common man reacted on the issue angrily. Regional chief of Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Narpat Singh Sekhawat and Bajrang Dal regional convener, Ashok Singh blamed the municipal corporation for the dismal economic condition of the goushala. “Mayor Nirmal Nahata should resign himself from the post, otherwise the government should expel him,” they said. The Congress also protested against the laxity of the government. Congressmen performed a mass prayer at Govind Dev Temple for the safety of goumata. Former Chief Minister Ashok Gehelot termed this matter a grave heartbreaking concern. State Congress chief spokesperson and vice-president Dr. Archana Sharma said the government must ensure political and administrative accountabilities on this issue.
Pratap Singh Khachariyawas, Jaipur District Congress Committee president, filed an FIR at Katouna police station against the state government’s Goupalan Minister, Chief Secretary, Health Secretary, etc. Speaking to Uday India, Khachriyawas said that actions must be taken against the culprits, who are behind the death of cows, according to Goushala act, 1964 and the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960. Mr. Khachariyawas alleged that Rs.25 crore had been diverted from Hingonia Goushala during the last two-and-a-half years of the BJP rule added he would shortly submit the documents of corruption to the Lok Ayukta.
The tragedy happened under the nose of the Rajasthan government, but the administration could not smell it. “Holy cow, the symbol of faith, are dying at Hingonia cowshed, which is very unfortunate,” said Jaipur Prant Sanghchalak Dr Ramesh Agrawal. “The Sangh now expects two-fold measures for their care. First, the government should immediately ensure measures through which the cows, which are unwell, can be saved. Second, a long term plan should be formulated with expert advice and improve the overall structure of gaushala,” Agrawal added.
Pradesh Congress Committee President Sachin Pilot visited the gaushala along with the Congress Seva Dal workers, and he said the BJP, which has exploited people’s religious sentiments in the name of cow protection, has utterly failed to manage cow shelters in the state. “If the state government is unable to look after Hingonia Gaushala, Congress Seva Dal workers would be willing to take over the responsibility of serving the cows.” Pilot also said the incidents of cow vigilante groups taking law into their own hands in the BJP-ruled states could have been avoided if Prime Minister Narendra Modi had given them the much-awaited warning earlier. Gaurakshaks in Rajasthan had harassed Kashmiri students on suspicion of cooking beef and beaten up truckers transporting the cattle several times.
Bovine heaven Rajasthan lets goumata die. Hundreds of carcasses, putrid stench from decomposing flesh drew attention of no one before media highlighted it. Who knows there may be several goushalas all over the country, which are going through such conditions. Forsaken holy cows are now food for vultures and hyenas in the country of the Hindus. Many organisations and also individuals raise funds in the name of cow protection, but in reality they do nothing for the safeguard of the cow. There are several instances of such bizarre forgeries, lately, but PM Modi’s warning, hopefully, would help in the noble cause of protecting the divine cows.
In the end, one should resurrect the words of Mahatma Gandhi to understand the cow protection, he wrote in Harijan on February 17, 1946, “Preservation of cattle is a vital part of gouseva. It is a vital question for India … There is urgent need for deep study and the spirit of sacrifice. To amass money and dole out charity does not connote real business capacity. To know how to preserve cattle, to impart this knowledge to the millions, to live up to the ideal oneself, and to spend money on this endeavor is real business. Cow slaughter can never be stopped by law. Knowledge, education, and the spirit of kindliness towards her alone can put an end to it.”
by Sanjay K bissoyi