Rajkot: Central government is getting stringent regarding making Aadhaar card mandatory for all transactions, and now it is time for cows to have one.
Taking clues from Yogi Adityanath government, Gujarat government went a step further by becoming the first Indian state where life imprisonment is given for cow slaughter. The Dalit community in the state has demanded that every cow be now given an ‘Aadhar card’ and there should be fodder depot at all villages to ensure that the bovines don’t feed on plastic.
Surendranagar-based dalit rights activist Natu Parmar is preparing to host a mega sammelan on the theme of ‘Jiv Matra, Karuna Ne Patra (Living creatures need compassion) on May 10.
Dalits who have been fighting for their rights, especially after four youths skinning dead cows were brutally flogged in Una, will attend the function. A life-size prototype of cow with huge quantity of plastic in its stomach will also be unveiled at the occasion.
“The aim of the sammelan is to tell the government that cows need to be given proper food. More cows die eating plastic than at slaughter houses in Gujarat. We are demanding that like every Indian citizen, Aadhaar cards be issued to cows and also that fodder depots on the lines of ration shops be opened at every village,” said Parmar. Dalits have also raised the issue of gauchar (pasture) land in villages that is fast depleting and being given away to industries at throwaway prices.
“We want that gauchar land be given back to villages and that it be used exclusively for cows. Postmortem should be conducted on each dead cow to ascertain the exact cause of deaths. Gauchar lands are given to industries and cows are left to eat plastics only,” said Martin Macwan, another dalit rights activist. On the occasion of the ‘Karuna Day’, a rally will be held from Savidhan Circle to the place of the event in Surendranagar on May 10.
Dalits have often complained of being subjected to brutality and humiliation by self-proclaimed cow protectors in the name of gau raksha. “But nobody cares when cows die after eating plastic,” Parmar said.
When contacted Vallabh Kathiria, chairman of Gujarat Gauseva and Gauchar Vikas Board said that all the cattle in the state are registered and there is no need to consider the demand of Aadhar cards for cows.
On fodder depots, he said, “Generally, cattle owners face shortage of fodder during summer. In such case, district collector makes the necessary arrangement and the cattle owners in scarcity-affected districts are given fodder at very nominal rates.”
Kathiria also said that only 20% gauchar land was given for industrial purposes and rest of 80% is available for cattle breeding. “We have also started removing babool trees from gauchar lands since five years so that our livestock can get more grazing land,” he added.