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Cowism - Political, Religious & Violent Side Of Sentiments
India is a land of religion and Gods, and then Godman. According to the data collected under the 2011 census, 79.8% Indians are Hindus and cows are a very sacred species to them. Time and again people have forgotten their mutual differences and came together when it came to saving their sacred species. Sadly some of these incidences ended in violence.
Cow is used for agriculture, farming, for milk and offers natural combustible fuel in the form of cow dung. There are many uses but it is the religious sentiments that bring these people together. Some of these incidents are sad and some downright violent.
In the light of the recent cowism story that has gone viral on the social media, let us have a look at 4 events within 6 months when cow became a matter of national importance on the grounds of religion and politics resulting into bloodshed and violence:
Cowism – April 2016
This one began with a sponsored story that was published by YourStory, a blog that specializes is covering the Indian startup ecosystem.
Chetan Raut, an engineer came up with a solution called Cowism. With this initiative, Raut is trying to promote sustainable agricultural farming by using tactics like integrated farming that is widely practiced in Maharashtra. Integrating native cattle breeds, says Raut should improve not only soil fertility, but also help in reducing costs thereby increasing profits for the farmers.
Forgetting the purpose of the initiative, the Twitterati went gaga with tweets like:
Cow Eating Plastic Bags That time Where is your #Cowism ? Dharam ke dhekedaro ko Iska jawab dena chahiye'
Hanged from the tree – March 2016
Two Muslims, one minor were found hanging from a tree in Jhabar village which falls under Latehar district. Five men were arrested over the suspicion of murdering these two cattle traders. One of the men who arrested belonged to Gau Raksha outfit. They claimed that they killed them because the duo resisted their attempts to steal the cattle for selling them in the fair. Surprisingly none of the family members of the victims came forward to blame the outfit. One the accused was later discovered to have some personal animosity with the victim.
Dadri Lynching – September 2015
image coutesy - TheHindu
Bisara village near Dadri in UP suddenly found itself in became national headlines when a mob of angry Hindus broke into a Muslim family's house and killed a man, Mohammad Akhlaq. His son was seriously injured in the attack.
Reason? A rumor was spread using the local temple's speaker that a Muslim family in the village is consuming meat from a dead cow that they killed. The priest and his assistant were arrested for questioning while political parties rushed in to play the blame game. 8 arrests were made while the locals protested and a sum of Rs. 10,00,000 was announced for the family who subsequently left the village after living there for over 70 years.
Violence in Varanasi – October 2015
The Manipuri district of Varanasi woke up to find two men named Rafeeq and Lala cow carcass. The news spread like wildfire and before long, both men surrounded by the angry villagers. Stones were thrown at them and several cars along with some public property were destroyed. The police had to intervene. An FIR was lodged and it was announced that the carcass was that of a different animal.
Seven policemen were injured and a lot of shops were burned during the protest. A government spokesperson said that the intention behind these rumors was communal violence and that the cow had died of natural causes.