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With a few takers for cattle adoption project, UP grapples to address stray animal issue

Under the scheme, the government offered a monthly allowance of Rs 900 per animal to the one who would adopt a cow which had turned commercially unviable.

Published: 18th November 2020 08:26 PM  |   Last Updated: 18th November 2020 08:26 PM   |  A+A-

stray cows, cow shelters

Image used for representational purpose only (File photo | EPS)

Express News Service

LUCKNOW: The cattle adoption project by the Yogi Adityanath government in September 2019 is gradually losing enthusiasm among the people.

Under the scheme, the government offered a monthly allowance of Rs 900 per animal to the one who would adopt a cow which had turned commercially unviable. The project aimed at generating employment for people and solve the problem of stray cattle simultaneously.

Under the scheme, people could adopt a maximum of four stray cattle and the government offered to pay them Rs 30 a day per animal. According to senior State government officials, initially, the project drew a good response.

In the first year of the project, around 54,000 abandoned cows were lucky enough to get new homes in with more than 26,500 farmers coming forward to adopt them during the last financial year that ended on March 31. Each cattle head was ear-tagged before being given for adoption for subsequent follow-up and
monitoring.

However, gradually, it lacked lustre. This forced the government to revise its strategy. In August 2020, CM Yogi announced that 1 lakh stray animals, mainly cows, would be adopted across the state in three months but the government figures suggest that in two and a half months not even 10,000 cows have been
adopted.

"The response of people has not been as encouraging as was expected. Not even 10,000 cows have been adopted so far despite robust campaigns in villages and government support in form of Rs 900 per month which is sent directly to the bank account of the beneficiary," said a senior official.

As per government figure, there are around 4 lakh abandoned cattle in temporary shelters across Uttar Pradesh.

Highly-placed sources in the department of animal husbandry claimed that in the current year, people so far had adopted around 9000-10,000 animals from various adoption centres across the state.

Yogi government is spending more on gaushalas and cattle protection measures than on improving infrastructure for primary school education. As per the state
budget-2019-20, an allocation of Rs 600 crore has been made towards cattle welfare.

Of the total budget for cattle protection, Rs 250 crore is for building cowsheds in rural areas and another Rs 200 crore for sheds in urban areas.

In order to make the cow shelters financially self-reliant, the state government has given a push to the programme wherein cow dung is being used to make wood for the pyre. A number of gaushalas across the state are resorting to it for financial sustenance. A Prayagaraj-based agro-technology firm has been roped in to impart training in making this wood from cow dung.



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