RAIPUR: The selling price of cow-dung in Chhattisgarh is officially fixed. The state government will begin its purchase from the farmers, cattle owners, and others at Rs 1.5 per kg from July 20 -- the day of a local festival ‘Hareli’ (derived from greenery).
The previous week the Bhupesh Baghel government took a decision to procure cow-dung under the new proposed scheme ‘Gaudhan Nyay Yojana’ with an intended aim to turn the animal husbandry as commercially profitable for livestock owners.
A five-member cabinet sub-committee headed by agriculture and water resources minister Ravindra Choubey finally specified the official valuation of cow-dung.
Emphasising to evolve a transparent mechanism in the purchase of cow-dung, the sub-committee stated that it would be procured by Gauthan Samiti (that manages the cattle-shed enclosures having scores of cows) and the self-help groups (SHGs) nominated by the Samiti. Almost every gram panchayat now has a Gauthan Samiti. Further, it would be the responsibility of the urban administration department and the forest management committee to respectively procure cow-dung from the urban areas and the forested terrain.
“They will carry out door-to-door collection and the payment would be released within 15 days”, said the official press statement.
“The scheme would boost the rural economy besides generating the scope of employment in rural areas. Such measure will also prevent the cattle move into grazing agricultural land besides check the movement of stray animals on the roads”, the chief minister Bhupesh Baghel said.
As per one estimate, there are around 1.10 crore cattle in Chhattisgarh and over four thousand tons of cow-dung likely to be purchased daily.
Commissioner (agriculture production) M Geeta said that the Gauthan Samiti and the SHGs would be trained on collection cow-dung to its utility as vermicompost and other outputs under the ‘Gaudhan Nyay Yojana’.
Taking a jibe at the government’s initiative the former chief minister Raman Singh states that the Congress government which couldn't procure the paddy from farmers is now preparing to purchase cow-dung.