New Delhi, April 8 (IANS) The cow, topping the agenda for the Bharatiya Janata Party, failed to get any promise in the 2019 Lok Sabha manifesto of the party, while it has spoken about the welfare and protection of the cow since 1984.
In the 1984 manifesto, the BJP promised that cow slaughter will be banned; in the next general elections in 1989 and 1991, the party again promised that it would work for the welfare of cows.
In 1989, it said it “recognises the fact that from times immemorial cow protection has remained one of the basic tenets of Indian culture and it is on the patient back of the cow and its progeny that the entire structure of the Indian agriculture rests.”
It had promised a total ban on the cow slaughter, ensuring that no one has a fundamental right of trade or business to slaughter cows.
Along with tax exemptions, in 1996, the party said it would ensure cow protection, and for that it would “impose a total ban on the slaughter of cows and cow progeny by amending Article 48 of the Constitution to cover bulls and bullocks, and prohibit all trading (state as well as private) in the slaughter of cows and cow progeny; and implement a policy for improved cattle-breeding.”
Similarly, in 1998 and 1999 the party promised policies for the cow, including a total ban on the slaughter of cows and cow-progeny and for special efforts “dairying, particularly in respect of cow and its progeny.”
In 2004, it promised a national cattle development board.
“Efforts will be made to evolve consensus for passing a Central legislation for the protection of cow and her progeny. Recommendations of the newly-established National Cattle Commission will be implemented,” the party promised in 2004.
Similar promises were made in 2009 and 2014 as well.
However, on Monday as the party released its manifesto, it only spoke about animal husbandry in general.
“We have given utmost importance to the dairy sector and have established Kamdhenu Aayog for the conservation of indigenous species of cattle. We will establish a network of mobile veterinary dispensaries to provide doorstep service to farmers…We will roll out a model programme for periodic health checkup of all cattle and other domestic animals at the district level with the help of veterinary experts from the public and private sector,” the 2019 manifesto said, while the term ‘cow’ has no mention in the manifesto.