THE cow, we know is meek and feeds 20,000 people in its life time just consuming grass. It is considered to be holy by all the ancient civilizations including that of India. It is the holy cow that every religion of Indian origin converges in spite of their differences in their spiritual philosophies and practices. This holy cow and its progeny is the source of wealth and also for creating wealth for rural communities. Thus it used to be an integral entity of the village life style.
The question to be addressed
This integral entity, a worshipful one was delinked at large from rural India because of changed life styles, driven by the so called industrial and consumeristic corporate driven economy. The erstwhile source of wealth, has become apparently a burden and paved the way for its prominent disappearance from rural life style. Now the mute, but vital question before us, is “How this cow can be re-linked to the village by making it a source of wealth and strengthen the rural economy and progress?”.
It remains as a question as long as cow rearing is uneconomic, which is true presently. Mahatma Gandhi voiced long back in unequivocal terms.“ When we study the religion of cow protection we shall have to consider the economic aspect. If cow protection runs contrary to pure economic merits, we shall have to give it up. Not only that, even if we want to protect the cow, she cannot be protected.” Finally he says: “The cow and men in India live together or die together” showing his heart’s concern for cow and its importance for India.
A ray of hope:
The Viswamangala Gou Gram Yatra, a massive campaign in the direction could become a means to achieve this relinking cow to the rural and thereby to our national economy making it sustainable and stable. At this age entering seventies and as a retired university professor, I feel it requires multi-pronged, comprehensive amicable positive attitudinal plan and approach that bring out results under the social and political situation. A precaution that occurs to my mind is that, the love, the devotion, the faith etc.. towards this subject, should not lead and result in obstinacy, at the cost of bringing in a breakthrough in social, political and governmental approaches.
We know that there are well meaning people in the administration and in the power centers that shape policies and are willing to help this program of strengthening the rural base of our country. Recently myself and sri Shravan kumar met the Honorable Rural Development Minister CP Joshi in New Delhi and apprised of the program. He was very cordial and courteous and suggested that the Ministry of Agriculture also should be involved to work out proper strategies. When Shri shyam sunder Agarwal and my self met the Director, bio-gas in the ministry of new and alternative sources of energy, he explained all the developmental plans available in harnessing the potential of bio-gas that may even mitigate the present consumption of fossil fuel sources, which is fast depleting and become scarce in the next five to ten years. Subsequently we met Mr Farooq. Abdulla who responded positively and informed, that his ministry is doing wonderful work in this direction. While appreciating the efforts of the ministry, I suggested that it should be implemented and accelerated to which Farooq Abdulla answered that his ministry is bent upon bringing all this into action. A one-day workshop for the prospective entrepreneurs that are willing to set up large biogas plants is planned to conduct in the near future.
Recently in December 2009, I addressed a training class in Administrative Training Institute, Mysore where in about thirty IAS officers were participating. The theme of their program was management of natural resources and my presentation was on “Organic farming, cow based economy and the environment”. The response after my forty-five minutes talk was quite encouraging and the interaction after the lecture made me confident, if this mission is properly presented to the appropriate authorities, it will take its due place once again to become sustainable in every facet of our nation’s progress. That is the time, the meek the holy cow become ever green.
To bring this vision into action, it needs some further thinking, to draw the proper contours and blue print for further plan of action. It should be another step forward, in our efforts of Endeavour.
(Former Head and Director schoolof chemistry, Andhra University. e.mail: [email protected])