Radha, Radhika, Shama, Rani and many more are set to walk the ramp for a beauty pageant in Haryana. But before you book your tickets, know that these pretty names don’t depict beautiful ladies, but beautiful cows. The state is all set to host a cow show at International Institute of Veterinary Education and Research in Bahu Akbarpur village of Rohtak district on May 6 and 7. As many as 250 cows were registered till Thursday, while the event organisers said they were expecting a strength of more than 500 to participate in the show, which will also have a competition of milk-yielding.
Registrations are on in full swing and the ramp where cows will walk is set. But, only desi breeds of cows are allowed, which include Hariana, Sahiwal, Tharparkar, Rathi, Belahi and Gir. The reason cited by the Haryana government was that it wants to promote desi breeds and flare up their prices in the market compared to foreign ones. Cattle owners from different parts of the state have started thronging the venue with their colourful cows, decorated to look beautiful and win various cash rewards.
“I have come from Karnal with 12 cows. My strong contender for the beauty contest, Radha, a Sahiwal cow, has won several contests in Punjab and Haryana,” Rajbir Singh, a cattle owner, said. Another contender from Mahendragarh, Mustaq Khan’s cow Amba yielded 19.5 litres milk in a recent contest in Muktsar. “I’m hopeful she will make me proud again,” he said.
Arrangements have been made for cows and their owners at the venue, which include food and shelter. A panel of scientists expert in the breeds of the cows will judge them on the basis of their ideal features. “Scientists from veterinary institutes and universities have been called as judges,” Prem Singh, nodal officer of the event, said. A winner will be announced in each category and the cow owners will reportedly be awarded Rs 2.5 lakhs.
The mind behind the show, Haryana animal husbandry and dairying minister, Om Prakash Dhankar told HT the idea behind starting this event: “All women are beautiful, but still the world organises beauty pageants for them. Whoever wins, suddenly becomes famous. Similarly, we want to organise beauty pageant for desi cows so they also get the limelight which they deserve and it flares up their market value. This will promote adoption of desi cows which are now being forgotten by Haryana farmers,” Dhankar said. “Besides, why should milk brands come and take away the earnings which our local farmers can get?” he asked.
Earlier scheduled for February 27 and 28, the event got postponed because the law and order situation in the state was not conducive after the state witnessed an unprecedented violence and arson.