Will cows in Rajasthan turn villagers into millionaires, clear air and turn out to be the most productive being?
Yes, says Vishnu Sharma, Krishi Upaj Mandi secretary, Nauhar, who is working hard to boost the rural economy and generate new sources of livelihood in the rural belt by running over 50 centres through out the state to produce cow dung products at a mass scale using automated machines made by engineering students.
This Holi, we are making cow dung cakes for Holi Dahan which will replace wood being used for the purpose. Also, we are generating demand for cow dung bricks which are used in laying the foundation of houses and are also creating market for idols of Gods and Goddesses made of cowdung.
In fact, automation machines are used to make quantum of products looking at the soaring demands in the market for these products, he says.
Hundreds of villagers are engaged these days in making cow dung cakes which are being sold like hot cakes for Holika Dahan.
“We have pledged to make maximum use of cowdung cakes for holika dahan this time and hence have engaged villagers across Rajasthan in different centres.”
In fact, we have invited students from engineering colleges who shall sit along with their machines to study the air quality index during Holida Dahan programmes. Cowdung cake use will definitely make a difference in checking air quality as compared to wood, he added.
As the centres are being run in the centre of villages and cities, people are seeing women making these cowdung cakes and hence are giving them advance orders for the same, he added.
Cows have the potential for changing the economic scenario of our nation. Recently Union Minister Nitin Gadkari launched cowdung paint. Besides this paint, pesticides being made of cow urine and neem leaves are much in demand to save plantation, said Vishnu.
Even the flower pots made of cowdung are much in demand these days. This way, cows which are not milking are also proving to be of immense use and helping villagers generate ample employment opportunities, he said adding the villages have started earning minimum salary of Rs 5,000 sitting at home engaged in making diverse range of cow products.
Shiv Dadheech, a PHD research student from The LNM Institute of Information Technology, says, “We are attempting to design modern automated machines which can help us make quality products. We strongly believe that cow can never remain unproductive.
“If our products make a hit in the market, gaushalas for lifetime will be productive. And more number of people can earn livelihood out of it,” he says.
During Diwali, we lit 51,000 lamps in Chittaurgarh which were made of cowdung, we sold rakhis too which were made up of cowdung and now, on this Holi, we have vowed to clean the air around and purify the surroundings, said Vishnu.
The entire benefit of the sale of these products will definitely help uplift the rural economy, he added.