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Rajasthan High Court recommends declaration of cow as national animal

The Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday recommended that the Centre declare the cow as a national animal and increase the punishment for cow slaughter to life imprisonment. In a slew of directions passed on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL), the court asked the State Chief Secretary to take steps to get the suggestions implemented.

Disposing of the PIL moved by Jago Janata Society regarding the conditions at Hingonia gaushala in Jaipur, the court also appointed a committee of lawyers to keep a watch on the cow shelter's functioning. The Forest Department was asked to plant 5,000 saplings every year in the gaushala to keep it green.

The judgment was delivered by Justice Mahesh Chandra Sharma at the High Court's Jaipur Bench on his last working day. The judge had earlier issued interim directions several times since 2010 for the upkeep of the gaushala, where a large number of cows had died recently due to unhygienic conditions.

The court said the nature of land allotted for the gaushala at Hingonia, on the outskirts of Jaipur, would not be changed and the State government would continue to allocate finances for its maintenance. The Anti-Corruption Bureau was also directed to probe into the allegations of financial irregularities in the cow shelter's maintenance.

The court asked the State Advocate General to render assistance for getting the national animal's status for cows, while making it clear that the enhancement of punishment to the life term should be made for the slaughter of all bovine animals.

The judgment has come amid a raging debate over the Centre's notification banning the sale of cattle for slaughter and the increasing instances of attacks and violence by cow vigilantes on the roads in several States on the suspicion of smuggling bovine animals.

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Printable version | Apr 13, 2021 7:06:15 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/rajasthan-high-court-recommends-declaration-of-cow-as-national-animal/article18664554.ece

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