Help desks to save cows from COVID: Public backlash forces Indian state to deny plan

May 10, 2021

NEW DELHI: Facing a wave of criticism following an announcement to set up help desks to protect cows in the wake of a pandemic crisis, the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh was on Sunday forced to deny...

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NEW DELHI: Facing a wave of criticism following an announcement to set up help desks to protect cows in the wake of a pandemic crisis, the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh was on Sunday forced to deny the plan, foreign media reported.

The chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath, known as a hardline Hindu politician of the country’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), has been promoting cow protection since the beginning of his term in 2017. The state already had 4,500 shelters and some 170 sanctuaries for the bovines, which are sacred in Hinduism.

With the country facing a drastic surge in coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases and its hospitals enduring a shortage of beds and oxygen, many were shocked to read in a circular widely quoted by the Indian media last week that Adityanath’s administration had announced the establishment of 700 help desks “for the welfare of cows.”

The centers, the notice said, would be equipped with “51 oximeters and 341 thermal scanners” in order to “ensure better animal care and testing.”



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