Locked in room inside a school, 17 cows die of starvation in Gwalior
Chief Minister Kamal Nath ordered an inquiry as the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) alleged that the incident showed “hollowness” of the state government’s claim on cow protection.Updated: Oct 17, 2019 20:32 IST
The Madhya Pradesh government deployed a large police force on Thursday near Dabra town of Gwalior district, 460 km north of Bhopal, as tension rose after 17 cows, which were allegedly locked in a room of a government high school a week ago by villagers, died of starvation, officials said.
Chief Minister Kamal Nath ordered an inquiry as the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) alleged that the incident showed “hollowness” of the state government’s claim on cow protection.
The matter came to light on Wednesday night when the residents of Samnadan village were trying to bury the carcasses with the help of an excavator, district administration officials said.
Police said an FIR was registered under MP’s anti-cow slaughter law and under provisions of cruelty to animals act against 10 unknown people and also the excavator owner late Wednesday night.
Gwalior, superintendent of police, Navneet Bhasin, said, “Police personnel have been deployed in the area to maintain law and order. The carcasses were buried respectfully in the outskirt of the village.”
“Prima facie, the abandoned cows were roaming at National Highway 75 and creating trouble for commuters. The villagers of Samnadan village drove them and locked in a room of a government high school a week ago,” said area sub-divisional magistrate, Dabra, Raghvendra Pandey, said.
Pandey said the villagers did not provide food and water to the cows which subsequently died. “As the foul smell of carcasses spread in the village, the villagers tried to bury them in the school premises. Some gau rakshak (cow vigilantes) and Vishwa Hindu Parishad leaders from Dabra reached the spot and created ruckus. Later, police and district administration reached the spot and controlled the situation,” he said.
Gwalior district collector, Anurag Chaudhary, ordered an inquiry against the school administration, village sarpanch and villagers and asked sub-divisional magistrate (SDM), Dabra, to submit a report in three days.
Condemning the incident, chief minister Nath said that the government was committed for protection of cows. “Such incidents will not be tolerated,” he tweeted.
The villagers refused to speak about the death of the cows.
BJP spokesperson Rajneesh Agrawal said, “From day one Congress-led state government is making announcements to provide safety to cows in MP but the announcement proved hollow as nothing happened in the past 10 months. The state government is responsible for death of the cows as animal husbandry minister Lakhan Singh Yadav failed to save the cows in his home district.”
A local, Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader, Brijesh Singh, said, “The cows were killed by people and whole village is responsible for that. If the district administration doesn’t take action against the villagers and school administration, we will launch an agitation.”
(With inputs from Mahesh Shivhare in Gwalior)