What has Narendra Modi done for cow protection? – Sushil Pandit

Narendra Modi

Sushil Pandit“The ‘pink revolution’ issue was not in the political realm till Narendra Modi decided to harp on it in speech after speech with sledgehammer effect. But all that has happened since he won is that India has knocked off Brazil from the number one position to emerge as the world’s largest beef exporter. That lament about the subsidies to katalkhanas during the campaign was not followed up with any policy review. Instead, encouragement was offered by lowering of excise duties. Commerce minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, actually gloated over the growing exports by calling a press conference.” – Sushil Pandit

CalfIt isn’t that the instances of outrage are getting rare these days. Yet, each successive instance seems to be more potent than the previous in throwing all and sundry opinion makers suddenly into the vortex of a nationwide debate. In a country where corpses rot away for want of attention, all it took were a couple of killings. In Bisada, first, a stray calf went missing after Eid. This calf, for several preceding months, was fondly fed by the villagers. A bunch of village boys suspected a Muslim family to have slaughtered it. A summary verification confirmed their doubt. It led, on the spur, to an assault on the men in the family in which a 50-year-old succumbed and his 20-year-old son was grievously injured and is struggling to stay alive in a hospital.

The media outrage it has caused covers an entire spectrum—from a thinly disguised worked up angst to being downright bizarre. Many rent-a-cause divas have begun to order the whosoever-it-may-concern chefs, from their Facebook accounts and Twitter handles, their steak preferences for dinner. A minister who, not too long ago, despatched a police battalion to hunt for his missing buffaloes, wants to petition the UN on the precarious plight of the Muslims in India. There was a rather tentative “other side” to this debate that has been browbeaten into a retreat. The vacuum is sought to be grabbed by some clumsy and coarse votaries of Hindutva, who are also the favourite whipping boys of the left-liberal cabal. Needless to say, it suits both. The real danger, though, is that this missing and underserved “other side” of the argument, in the increasingly one-sided debates that dominate our mediascape, if not given its legitimate due, is likely to extract a disproportionate price, sooner than the most chatting cognoscenti think. This unrepresented side has, for a very long time, held its silence with patience. And, even at the risk of being mistakenly seen as defending the indefensible, one cannot but try to strike a balance.

Feeding a cow at the front gate.Let me state the obvious to start with as I am not too sure if we all remember this. It is customary in many Hindu homes to spare the first roti for the cow’s progeny, and the last one for the dog, (just in case we forget the dogs). The cow’s share is out of reverence. Perhaps the dog’s too is. Though the dog’s could also be out of concern for the friendly guard that watches over the street, or just a “transaction” with the “planets” to seek deliverance, or even mere compassion for the fellow living being. In fact, in my neighbourhood, there is someone who drives up in a car with buckets of milk-soaked bread, to serve the food in several aluminium dog plates he brings along, to the dozens of stray canine that have become a menace for strangers. There are people who pick up fights every day, even move courts, when they see “their” dogs being harmed in any manner. I also often see on my morning walks, people carrying, in small packets, grain to feed the birds or flour to feed the ants. I recall this to underscore the fact that, “we the people”, even in the largely deracinated metropolitan towns and their cosmopolitan suburbia, routinely witness and experience common people caring for birds and animals out of faith or compassion, if not both. Not all of them may be vegetarians and, therefore, you could mock at their “hypocrisy” but that is how it is. In the rural hinterland, the people, despite the ubiquitous smartphones, are still far more rooted.

And, if you are wondering what smartphones have got to do with it, let me give you the context, besides the obvious. On September 8, the Jammu bench of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court ordered the police to enforce a long-existing law banning cow slaughter that was often violated with impunity. This led to the jihadi-separatists openly calling for public slaughter of cows in defiance. They followed it up with gory videos of flailing and writhing cows, pinned down and being slaughtered, jamming up the storage-space on mobile phones across the country. I couldn’t bear to watch one such “clip”. I wonder what outrage it must have caused to countless others. But, there was no outpouring against this outrage. It just wasn’t fashionable enough for the rock star anchors or the newsroom chatterrati.

Narendra ModiNobody addressed the “pink revolution” campaign-jibe of the 2014 polls either. This issue was not in the political realm till Narendra Modi decided to harp on it in speech after speech with sledgehammer effect. But all that has happened since he won is that India has knocked off Brazil from the number one position to emerge as the world’s largest beef exporter. That lament about the subsidies to katalkhanas [abattoirs] during the campaign was not followed up with any policy review. Instead, encouragement was offered by lowering of excise duties. Commerce minister, Nirmala Sitharaman, actually gloated over the growing exports by calling a press conference. It is entirely another matter that on being allotted a bungalow on becoming minister, she organised a big puja and had a cow towed into her house, to be taken from room-to-room, for good omen.

How can you raise expectations on such an emotive issue and do nothing about it? Forget doing something, you have actually acted contrary to what you had promised. The villages in Haryana and Uttar Pradesh have mounted citizens’ vigil in the face of government apathy. It has even led to vigilantism in several cases. And then, what you get to see is all those gut-wrenching slaughter videos, aimed to provoke. For it to not explode into a calamity of the Bisada kind was an exaggerated expectation.

What has happened after the calamity too is no less perverse. Often, very reasonable people seem to suggest that any concession on letting you eat a pig entitles them to eat a cow. The pig isn’t held sacred in Islam or Judaism. It is just not kosher, or halal. So, if you think it is not edible, good for you. Do not eat it. But your faith is not about protecting, conserving or worshipping pigs. The cow, on the other hand, is sacred to Hindus. It isn’t as if you don’t know that such a comparison is dishonest. Yet, in search of a moral equivalence, this argument is routinely deployed.

Why do pet lovers turn squeamish on the issue of dog meat and seek a ban? Do people in Mumbai and Delhi have the right to eat dogs? Why isn’t anybody’s freedom to choose one’s food restrained by a ban on killing our national bird peacock or Bishnoi conserved black bucks? Why isn’t somebody’s right to aphrodisiacs violated by a ban on rhinoceros, bear and tiger poaching? Why are some bans enforced with all the celebrities lining up and sponsored events, while other bans made an example of, in violation? Why must the state abdicate its responsibility enshrined in the directive principles that are part of the Constitution and look the other way? Is it just because barbecues, roasts and lean cuts elevate some of you to the status of colonial sahibs, the pleasures of which the village bumpkins, who rear those cows, have no right to come in the way of, because they are unwashed, unlettered and ignorant and do not know how to glamourise their cause with slut parades? – Daily-O, 6 November 2015

» Sushil Pandit is an exiled Kashmiri Hindu, communication strategist, and activist.

Nirmala Sitharaman

See also


4 Responses

  1. There should be all around awareness programme to make people understand the significance of Indian desi cow. Indian desi cow (not jersey cow or any other breed) has the superior and spiritual (not religious) value including her product like Milk, Urine & Gobar. There is direct link between her and mother earth. The peace and prosperity can be achieved on the earth by serving the desi cows. Therefore, service to Indian desi cow should not be linked to any religion.

    Her urine is used to cure dreaded disease like Cancer, AIDS and many other type of disease and her gobar can be used as an alternative source of energy through gobar plant for generating gas for cooking, gas for generating electricity and gas for running the vehicles etc. Gobar and urine also used as best available fertilizer & insecticides. Unfortunately chemical fertilizer and poisonous insecticides are used which is not only producing harmful crops but polluting ground water used for drinking purpose. Indian desi cows are the backbone of organic agriculture, instrumental for environment protection, healthcare and peace & prosperity on earth. In short she is the backbone of human welfare.

    We must work hard and target to bring law on complete ban on desi cow slaughter in the country through awareness programme, legal and political course. In order to achieve peace & prosperity on the Earth, we must put pressure on Modi Government to bring a law for complete ban on slaughter of desi cow, including calf & bulls.


  2. well said cnm, nice foresight. Hindu politicians are the worst of kind of thieves/traitors whether its bjp’s modi, nirmala or prakash or congi/ commie politicos. They know the art of cheating people, double talk, sweet talk, giving hopes & promises, raising issues as if they care. In the end they ditch you. This is nothing new. Indian people has been seeing this since 1947 and nothing has changed a bit. You have to challenge this political class existence. A potent hindu militia/army (like pakistan’s jihad groups) is a must to challenge these hindu politicians across parties and, of course, from islamic jihadis. Govt. will do nothing to protect hindu people because gangsters only rule. Perform or perish should be the mantra for governance and not any other thing.


  3. Right from day one I had no illusion about the performance of Modi. I knew he would be a disaster for the Hindus and there is no reason why I will change my stand now. I have always been correct in my evaluation of the sanghis for I APPLY THE GREAT SITARAM GOELji’s golden rule while evaluating the performance of a sanghi and that rule is – in sangha ladder the higher you go the greater duffer you meet. So Modi being in the highest rung of sangh ladder is the greatest duffer. No doubt about that..


  4. Narendra Modi on Pink Revolution in UP

    Narendra Modi on Pink Revolution in Bihar


Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: