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Cows on Ramp: India’s Unique Bovine Beauty Pageant

Farmers from 21 districts of Haryana brought their cows and bulls to participate in the event

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(Representative image) Cows on Maheshwar Ghats, Wikimedia
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ROHTAK: On 14 May 2016, hundreds of cows and bulls, decked up in traditional attire, walked the ramp in a bovine beauty pageant which was organised in Haryana’s Rohtak town for the purpose of raising awareness about animal health and promoting domestic cattle breeds.

Farmers from various districts of Haryana brought their cows and bulls to participate in the event and felt proud when they were walking on the ramp along with their animals at the sprawling grounds of the International Institute of Veterinary Education and Research. The state government was trying to promote local breeds of cows and therefore only indigenous breeds were allowed to participate in the event.

Related Article: Beef Controversy: Origins of beef consumption in India

The animals were judged by a panel of experts. The judgement was on the basis of animal’s size and their overall beauty like length of their horns and for cows- their milk yielding capacity was counted as well. Out of more than 630 animals, 18 were selected as winners in different categories- from the healthiest to best-looking cows and bulls, The Times of India reported.

The Agriculture Minister of Haryana, OP Dhankar was invited as the chief guest at the event, gave the prize money of 250,000 rupees (£2,500; $3,600) to the owner of the winning cow.

Cow at the event Image: News18
Cow at the event Image: News18

While most cows and bulls were swift and walked gracefully on the ramp, other had to be pulled and prodded by their owners to walk for judges and finish the ramp distance with the huge crowd cheering their every move.

Cows hold a unique and a sacred position in Hindu society. Apart of being considered as a sacred animal in Hindu mythology and revered by millions of Hindus, cows are also loved as the source of the milk products used in almost every Indian dish, from curries to desserts.

In 2014, India surpassed the European Union as the world’s largest milk producer. A number of Indian states have recently introduced laws completely banning the possession or consumption of beef.

Compiled By Pashchiema Bhatia. Twitter: @pashchiema

 

 

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  • Akanksha Sharma

    Cow is considered as goddess in hindu religion and people worship them, thus they do not prefer eating beef. But banning the consumption on beef according to the Hindu religion beliefs gives the fear of Rising hindu nationalism. India is a secular state, so Hindus cannot force their religion on other religions.

    • Pashchiema Bhatia

      Its not just about religion, there are Hindus as well who consume and but we cannot ignore the fact that banning anything in India is not an easy task.. Due to rising intolerance, government would have to face thousands of protesters confronting the ban.. And moreover, India is a secular country. It cannot support anyone’s religious beliefs while denying the others’

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  • Akanksha Sharma

    Cow is considered as goddess in hindu religion and people worship them, thus they do not prefer eating beef. But banning the consumption on beef according to the Hindu religion beliefs gives the fear of Rising hindu nationalism. India is a secular state, so Hindus cannot force their religion on other religions.

    • Pashchiema Bhatia

      Its not just about religion, there are Hindus as well who consume and but we cannot ignore the fact that banning anything in India is not an easy task.. Due to rising intolerance, government would have to face thousands of protesters confronting the ban.. And moreover, India is a secular country. It cannot support anyone’s religious beliefs while denying the others’

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Hindus In Delhi Push For A Temple On The Ruins Of a Mosque

The Supreme Court has delayed hearings into the disputed site but hardliners have vowed to lay a foundation stone next year regardless.

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Supporters of Vishwa Hindu Parishad gather during a rally in New Delhi, Dec. 9, 2018. The group gathered thousands of supporters to demand the construction of a Hindu temple on a site where a mosque was attacked, demolished in 1992. VOA

Tens of thousands of hardline Hindu protesters marched in New Delhi on Sunday, calling for a grand temple to be built on the ruins of a destroyed mosque in a flashpoint Indian city.

Trident-waving devotees clad in saffron filled a huge parade ground in the Indian capital under tight security, where speakers warned Prime Minister Narendra Modi they would not let up until the temple was sanctioned.

Some of Modi’s supporters feel the Hindu nationalist leader has not done enough to raise a shrine at a site in Ayodhya, a city believed by many to be the birthplace of the deity Ram.

The site was home to a medieval mosque for 460 years until Hindu zealots tore it down in 1992, kicking off riots across India that left thousands dead, most of them Muslims.

Its future has been tied up in courts for decades but some hardliners want Modi, who is seeking reelection in 2019, to push parliament to guarantee the temple by law.

World Hindu Congress, Hindu
Hindus don’t oppose anyone, don’t aspire to dominate: RSS chief

“The gathering here is telling you that Hindus won’t sit back until the temple is built, and our wishes are respected,” said Champat Rai, the leader of the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) group that organized the protest.

Demonstrators chanting “Praise be to Ram” packed the Ramlila Maidan, a vast ground capable of holding more than 50,000 people, and filled the surrounding streets.

Some carried maces and tridents — weapons traditionally wielded by Hindu gods — and traveled great distances by train and bus to reach the rally.

“We have come here to protect our religion and Hindu pride. We want a temple for our Lord Ram,” Hitesh Bharadwaj, a teacher from Delhi’s satellite city Noida, told AFP.

The hardline VHP has applied pressure on Modi in recent weeks, staging a huge show of force in Ayodhya itself last month.

Hindu, Mosque
Photo credit: theguardian.com

A close ally of Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the group is spearheading a push to raise the Ram temple, and is calling for more protests as the premier prepares to go to the polls by May.

The BJP was on the margins until the 1980s when its top leaders, including Modi, backed a growing movement for the construction of the Ram temple.

Its advocates want parliament to introduce a law bypassing legal hurdles blocking the temple before Modi’s term ends.

Also Read: Delhi’s Air Quality Leads To Ban On Trucks And Construction

The Supreme Court has delayed hearings into the disputed site but hardliners have vowed to lay a foundation stone next year regardless.

“We don’t care about the courts. A grand temple will be constructed in 2019,” Sushil Chawdhary, a VHP leader, told AFP. (VOA)