The Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has withdrawn on Friday it’s February 6 appeal urging people to celebrate February 14 as ‘Cow Hug Day’. The appeal invited criticism from farmers’ organisations and trade unions that such a circular was against the promotion of scientific temper.
In social media too, the appeal, issued by Secretary of the AWBI S.K. Dutta, was criticised for suggesting to hug cows on Valentine’s Day. Mr. Dutta said in a fresh circular issued on Friday that the decision to withdraw the appeal is after directions from the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying.
Union Minister of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying Parshottam Rupala had supported such a move and said on Thursday that the country has a tradition of worshipping cows. However, farmers’ organisations and trade unions had questioned the logic of such an appeal that claimed hugging cows will bring “emotional richness” and will increase “individual and collective happiness.”
Mr. Dutta said in the new circular: “As directed by the Competent Authority and Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, the appeal issued by the Animal Welfare Board of India for the celebration of ‘Cow Hug Day’ on February 14, 2023 stands withdrawn.”
Mr. Rupala had said on Thursday that it will be good if people respond positively to the call given by the AWBI. “This country has an age-old tradition of worshipping cows and it is a matter of great happiness that people embrace cows… It is good if people respond positively to our appeal,” the Minister had said.