The cow vigilantes are getting too edgy these days. We have had a few instances in the past few weeks…. of the ‘Gau Rakshaks‘ (Cow Protectors), taking law into their own hands. What has got the goat of these Cow Vigilantes is disturbing for a democratic set-up.
A Muslim couple in a train in Madhya Pradesh had been assaulted for carrying a bag with beef, which turned out to be Buffalo meat. In another incident a few days earlier, a few ‘Dalit’ youths were beaten mercilessly in Gujarat. Their attackers claimed the youths had killed a cow and were then caught skinning it. The youth themselves aver that the cow, though holy, had already been dead and they were only skinning it as part of their hereditary profession.
Maybe the cow vigilantes would do well to check how many of them or their own friends wear or use articles made from Leather or Cow leather to be more precise. Would these Gau Rakshaks submit their friends to the same treatment. After all, patronage is the root cause of any trade. It is one thing to preach and another to practice, especially changing centuries old traditions. It is a tribute to the wisdom of ancient India that it discovered multiple benefits related to the cow that modern science is now acknowledging. That its dung is a germicide, its urine contains potent nutrients (traditional men still drink cow urine), ‘ghee’ if used well has many benefits that out-weigh the negatives that modern dieticians were late in understanding. Dare one say that ancient Indian medical texts also refer to bovine flesh as cure for specific ailments? Religious sentiments need to be respected. But law and order too.
It is Cool Chilli’s view that treating animals well and killing them (if necessary) humanely reflects much about us a society. A person who rears animals kindly and then kills them humanely looks better than the vegetarian cart-driver who twists his bullocks’ tails.