UP govt’s bovine bonanza: Upkeep of cattle to be part of CSR now
Upkeep of cattle in Uttar Pradesh will henceforth also be a responsibility of private and public sector enterprises which would be required to spend part of their corporate social responsibility fund for better care of cows and bulls.
“It is not mandatory but they will be persuaded to chip in by setting up cow dung based gas plants or units that can utilize cow’s urine etc for making products for domestic use,” said Rajiv Gupta, Chairman of the UP Gau Seva Aayog.
A meeting chaired by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on August 30 said that companies should be involved through CSR to take up the responsibility of promoting ‘panchgavya’ (products based on cow dung urine, milk, curd and ghee).
The meeting decided that the Central government be requested to give tax relief to companies, institutions and organisations giving aid for the upkeep of cattle.
The Jhansi division commissioner has been specifically asked to get in touch with Ayurvedic pharma company Baidyanath regarding uses of cow urine.
Rajiv Gupta said a Kanpur-based company was utilising 120 tonnes of cow dung daily to produce CNG and supply it to different units. The revenue generated is used for maintaining gaushalas. It not only helps animals but also provides livelihood and helps development of local areas.
Gupta said that some of India’s big corporate houses have already made contributions to gaushalas a part of their corporate social responsibility. These included Tatas and pharma biggie Alembic.
With bovines being central to the RSS and BJP’s political agenda, the Uttar Pradesh government seemed to have copied the template prepared by Gujarat and Rajasthan governments. Rajasthan also has made upkeep of cow and its family part of CSR.
It is not that cow upkeep was being left to the private sector alone. Gupta said that the state government had earmarked Rs 20,000 crore for the purpose.
The August 30 meeting decided that cow protection committees headed by district magistrates be set up at the district level. These committees will work under the supervision of Gau Seva Ayog.
These committees would be required to ensure smooth function of goshalas at the district level and help them achieve self-reliance by assisting them in promoting cow-based products like compost, biogas, mosquito repellant coils, soap, incense sticks, gonyl (phenyl made from cow urine) made from panchgavya.
It was decided that a beginning be made by establishing govansh van vihar (cattle forest areas) in every district of Bundelkhand, each capable of providing feed for about 1000 stray cattle.
The divisional commissioners of Bundelkhand were expected to ensure sheds, godowns for fodder, drinking water points in goshalas falling under their respective areas.
The meeting also decided that MPs and MLAs be requested to visit go vansh vihar and goshalas and contribute towards their maintenance from their local area development funds.