AWBI\'s withdrawal of ‘Cow Hug Day’ sparks row

HYDERABAD: The Animal Welfare Body of India’s (AWBI) withdrawal of its call for the celebration of "Cow Hug Day" on February 14 — Valentine's Day — has outraged cow protection and welfare organisations in the city.

The Yuga Thulasi Foundation, a charitable organisation involved in the welfare and protection of cows, denounced the AWBI for abandoning its plan to observe February 14 as ‘Cow Hug Day,’ claiming that such events would foster a strong sense of empathy for the animal, which the Hindu community holds in the highest regard.

The organisation demanded that the cow be recognised as the country's national animal.

After widespread criticism on social media and from political parties, the AWBI had rescinded its call for celebrating Valentine's Day as "Cow Hug Day." The AWBI is a statutory body under the department of animal husbandry and dairying of the Central government.

K. Shiva Kumar, chairman of the Yuga Thulasi Foundation and former TTD board member, asked why the government had to reverse its own decision when the initial decision had been applauded by every Hindu with the exception of some political parties.

The AWBI said that the cow has a nurturing nature while calling for Cow Hug Day to be celebrated on the Valentine’s Day, which was backed by Union minister Parshottam Rupala. Why then did it reverse its own decision, caving under pressure from political parties,” Shiva Kumar asked.

“Cow is the most revered in the country. We call it Gowmatha, why then should the government go back on its own decision,” he questioned.

The retraction of the AWBI's decision is saddening, according to Dharamraj Ranka, a gaushala owner whose Satyam Shivam Sundaram Gau Nivas in Gaganpahad houses more than 5,700 cows. “The government ought to have upheld its decision because we revere cows. Hugging a cow has an uplifting effect and gives a positive energy,” he remarked.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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