KOLKATA: In a bid to raise awareness about the importance of cow and horror of cow slaughter, an NGO in Kolkata has come up with a novel idea of organising a "selfie with a cow" contest in the city.
The 'cowfie' contest was started by "Go Seva Parivar", the NGO, during a month-long online campaign in November inviting people to post selfies with cows.
An official of the NGO told PTI that cow protection was not a religious or political issue, but backed by its scientific use.
"Every product from cow has its scientific value and need, whether it is urine or milk," the official explained.
Earlier, an NGO had organised a programmme of distributing cow milk for free to raise awareness against cow slaughter.
With a political slugfest being witnessed on the twin issues of cow slaughter and beef consumption in the country, the cowfie contest has gained relevance.
In Hinduism, cows are considered sacred and referred to as "mother cow".
According to the official, the contest and the campaign will educate people on the economic and medicinal benefits the cow produces, much more than what is gained from slaughtering a cow for beef.
The BJP-ruled states such as Maharashtra, Haryana and Rajasthan have enacted tough laws on cattle slaughter. In West Bengal, however, cow slaughter is not banned, nor is the consumption of beef.
Pictures ranging from kissing a cow to touching its feet and hugging a cow went viral on the Facebook page named "Go Seva Parivar".
Pictures with caption "Save cow, Save Mankind", "Gomata Sabki Mata" were seen on the Facebook page.
"If you can take a selfie with your mother, family members and pets, why can't you take a selfie with cow who are so useful for the mankind," goes a poser by a contestant.