Rajasthan Government on July 27, 2018 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a private trust Sohanlalji Buladeviji Ojha Gaushala Samiti to build its first 'Cow Sanctuary', a shelter for 10000 cows.
The cow sanctuary will be spread over an area of more than 220 hectares in Bikaner district.
This move is the latest in a list of initiatives announced by the BJP government in the state for the protection of cows since it came to power in 2013.
In June 2018, the state government introduced a 20 percent surcharge on liquor to use the proceeds for protection of cows in the state.
In 2017, the state had announced a 10 percent surcharge on stamp duty towards cow protection. In 2015, Rajasthan had become first state to have a separate department and ministry for the welfare of cows.
Rajasthan’s Cow Sanctuary
• This will be the first cow sanctuary in Rajasthan and will be situated in Bikaner’s Napasar.
• The Sohanlalji Buladeviji Ojha Gaushala Samiti will be managing the sanctuary.
• The objective behind this initiative is to dedicate the entire area for cows, much on the lines of a wildlife sanctuary.
• Facilities in the sanctuary will include hospitals and Sewan grass as fodder for the animals. The Sewan grass is considered to be among the best quality fodder for cows.
• The sanctuary will gradually be developed as a tourist destination.
• The cows which will be kept at the sanctuary would primarily be the animals which are abandoned by their owners after they stop producing milk and become stray animals.
• Animals rescued from cattle smugglers will find shelter in this cow sanctuary.
India’s first cow sanctuary is located at MP’s Agar Malwa district
India’s first cow sanctuary was set up by the government in September 2017 in Madhya Pradesh’s Agar Malwa district. The sanctuary, named as ‘Kamdhenu Gau Abhyaranya’, was developed by the MP Gau Samvardhan Board in Salaria village, nearly 50 kms from the district headquarters.
Spread over 472 hectares, the sanctuary has the capacity to house 6000 cows. It was built at a cost of Rs 32 crore.
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