Going ahead with its apparent policy of a blanket ban on cow slaughter across the country, the central government is reportedly planning to start ‘Project Cow’, under which cow sanctuaries will be set up each state.
Minister of State for Home Affairs Hansraj G Ahir told the Indian Express that setting up sanctuaries will set aside the “biggest stumbling block” in the pursuit of a complete ban on cow slaughter.
The decision comes amid the nationwide debate over demands to ban cow slaughter and rising incidents of violence by gau rakshaks
“We have been considering a proposal and have been working on it for some time now. We need to stop cow slaughter, but the biggest stumbling block is who will take care of these cows,” the minister told the daily.
He believes that setting up sanctuaries for the animals and providing fodder will stop farmers from selling old cows for slaughter.
“I have discussed the matter with the Environment Ministry, and we plan to expedite this proposal,” said the Bharatiya Janata Party MP from Chandrapur, Maharashtra. Despite Ahir’s statement, details of the actual plan and what it proposes are unavailable.
Over the last few days, number of reports of so-called gau rakshaks using violence to demand a ban on cow slaughter and beef, have been emerged. On 4 April, a dairy farmer in Alwar, Rajasthan, was lynched by a mob that accused him of smuggling cattle.
Recently, pamphlets were appeared in the region saying that the trucks transporting cattle were intercepted by “social workers” . Police are already under fire for going soft on the nine accused.