The omnipresent Indian cow can now hope to enjoy better protection and benefits from government welfare schemes as proposal has been given for opening a cow sanctuary and declaring cow as national animal, writes Vibha Singh
The message given by Shri Krishna is even more relevant today…“Humans need cows more than cows need humans. Cows need to be protected for humans to survive.”
India was golden bird due to her prosperity coming through agriculture and dairy products in ancient time. The agriculture was beneficial due to lost cost organic farming using bull’s energy and using cow dung. So farmers were rich at the time. As desi cows are heat-tolerant and tick-tolerant, and they have good immune systems; these are found on 55 degree temperature in desert of Rajasthan. Due to this reason milk revolution came from Amul and Saras industries which started on less rain fall area of Anand (Gujarat) and Bikaner in Thar desert.
Thus to increase more awareness about the “BOS INDICUS-The Glorious Indian cow a national conference was organised by Virat Hindustan Sangam at the Bombay Stock Exchange. The aim of the seminar was to bring all the stakeholders working for the welfare of the cows under one roof and thus ‘Cow Connect’, a mobile application aimed at providing effective search on cow products, breeds, manufacturers, and sellers was unveiled on the occasison.
Protecting the cow
Cow protection is the most important principle for saving the world from moral degradation. Talking about the need for the protection of cow and making it a national animal, Sri Pasu Seshadri Raghvan, founder secretary, Eco-Ashram said, “Cow represents the sacred principle of motherhood. She symbolises charity and generosity because of the way she distributes her milk, which is essential for the children. The Vedas do not teach that the cow is superior to the human form of life and therefore should be worshipped. But she gives so much practical help to human society that she should be protected.”
Agrees Hansraj Ahir, Union minister of state for home who proposed that India’s seven crore hectares of forest land to be converted into “cow sanctuaries” along the lines of Project Tiger. “Farmers who wish to abandon old unproductive cows can leave them there. We can also incentivise fodder banks,” he said. Suggestions were also given by gaurakshaks to set up a cow protection task force on the lines of anti-terrorist squad.
Insisting on stronger rule for the protection of the cow, Subramaniam Swamy, BJP’s Rajya Sabha MP said, “Even the Mughals were aware that if they had to rule India then they could not openly support cow slaughter, but the British had failed to appreciate this.” He demanded death penalty for cow slaughter and wants that government should develop a proper model so that milk export could become an industry in itself. “As at the present the milk produced in India is cheapest in the world and this could be the biggest foreign exchange earner for the country,” he said.
Promoting economic growth
Emphasis is being laid on developing models like Amul dairy development in every state. Talking about the changes in economic scenario Dr Sahadev Dasa who has written the book Captialism, Communism and Cowism- a new economics for the 21 st century says, “If humanity and the planet have to survive, we have to replace our present day economic model. It’s a fossil based car-centered, energy inefficient model and promotes over exploitation of natural resources, encourages a throwaway society which creates social injustice and is not viable any longer.”
Various government schemes and cow-shelter projects have been launched in last three years to conserve the indigenous bovine. Hrishikesh Mafatlal, industrialist, wants that the industries and corporates to undertake looking after the cows as a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).
Vegetarian food is the best
Experts even were promoting vegetarianism at the conference to save cow. Many of them pointed out that a single individual by not consuming meat prevents the equivalent of 1.5 tonnes of CO2 emissions in a year. This is more than the one tonne of CO2 prevented by switching from a large sedan to a small car. Govind Das, spiritual guru, ISCKON explained, “There are a number of reasons to be a vegetarian. The ideas that meat has a monopoly on protein and that large amounts of protein are required for energy and strength are both myths. Of the twenty-two amino acids, all but eight can be synthesised by the body itself, and these eight ‘essential amino acids’ exist in abundance in non-flesh foods. Dairy products, grains, beans and nuts are all concentrated sources of protein. Cheese, peanuts and lentils, for instance, contain more protein per gram than the non-vegetarian food. There is no justification for eating meat, given the devastating consequences for the planet.”
The other important subject discussed included the claims that cows could cure cancer, Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy. The five products of cow known as Pancha Gavya that includes milk, curd, ghee, urine and dung of a cow has been scientifically tested and researched based on which it has been given a prime importance by our ancestors.
Our rishis and ayurvedic practitioners have always used natural medicines in their medical treatment. Experts talked about the importance of cow urine which is used to produce a whole range of ayurvedic drugs, especially to treat skin diseases like eczema. Cow milk and ghee helps develop the brain of children. Gopal Sutaria, director, Gauseva and Gauchar Vikas Board, explains, “Cow urine is of medicinal importance and dung fertiliser is important in helping to improve the structure of the soil (aggregation). Animal manure has been used for centuries as a fertiliser in farming, improving the soil structure so that it holds more nutrients and water and becomes more fertile.”