The cow should be declared as the national animal of India, the Allahabad High Court said today. The court said cow protection should be made a fundamental right “…because we know that when the country’s culture and its faith gets hurt, the country becomes weak.” The judges remarked so while denying bail to Javed, accused of slaughtering a cow under the Prevention of Cow Slaughter Act in Uttar Pradesh.
The court said that fundamental rights are not the prerogative of beef eaters alone but also of those who worship the cow. The court said the people of the second kind are financially dependent on cows and so have the right to lead a meaningful life.
Justice Shekhar Kumar Yadav, of a single-judge bench, said that the government should pass a bill in the parliament to give fundamental rights to the cow.
The Allahabad High Court said that the right to life was above the right to kill and the right to eat beef could never be considered a fundamental right.
“The cow is useful even when she is old and sick, and her dung and urine are very useful for agriculture, making of medicines, and most of all, the one who is worshipped as a mother even if she gets old or sick. No one can be given the right to kill her,” the court was quoted as saying in the report.
Further, the court said that not only Hindus have understood the importance of cows but Muslims also have considered the cow an important part of India’s culture during their reign. “Slaughter of cows was banned by five Muslim rulers,” the judge said, adding that Babur, Humayun and Akbar had prohibited the sacrifice of cows also in their religious festivals. “The Nawab of Mysore, Hyder Ali, made cow slaughter a punishable offence,” the court recalled from history.
The court took a grim view of the functioning of gaushalas across the state, stating that it was very sad to see that those who talked about cow protection and promotion became cow eaters.
“The government also gets the gaushalas constructed, but the people who have to take care of the cow do not take care of the cows. Similarly, the private gau-shalas have become a mere sham today in which people take donations from the public and help from the government in the name of cow promotion, but spend it for their own interest and do not care of the cow.”