UP to impose 'cow welfare cess'

The Uttar Pradesh government on Tuesday decided to build temporary cow shelters in every district and impose a cow welfare cess for their maintenance.

The Uttar Pradesh government on Tuesday decided to build temporary cow shelters in every district and impose a cow welfare cess for their maintenance.

The move is an apparent bid to douse the anger arising out of the menace of roaming stray cattle which destroyed crops in the rural areas. 

The decision was taken at a meeting of the state Cabinet here.

A government spokesman said that these temporary shelters would have a capacity to have around 1,000 cattle. The government has also released Rs 100 crore to the local bodies for construction of the shelters.

He said that the government has also decided to "punish" those, who abandoned their cattle. "Action will be taken against such people... financial penalties will also be imposed on them," he added.

The spokesman said that the temporary shelters would help house the abandoned stray cattle and prevent the destruction of the crops. "It will also prevent their slaughter," he added.

The government move comes in the wake of reports that people packed primary schools in rural areas with stray cattle. This happened in western Uttar Pradesh districts of Agra, Mathura, Baghpat, among others. In many areas, the schools had to be closed.

In some parts of the state, angry farmers also packed some buildings of government offices with stray cattle. Reports of clashes between the police and villagers were also received from some places.

Dozens of cattle died reportedly of hunger and cold in the schools, triggering tension there.

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UP to impose 'cow welfare cess'

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