The Rajasthan High Court on Wednesday directed the state government to coordinate with the Centre and take necessary steps to declare cow as a national animal. A single-judge bench of Justice Mahesh Chand Sharma also appointed the chief secretary and the advocate general of the state to be the legal custodians of the cow. After passing the verdict, the judge, who retired today, said his verdict on the matter was his “soul’s voice” and that “no crime is more heinous than cow slaughter.”
In the 145-page order, he said “Nepal is a Hindu nation and has declared cow as national animal. India is a predominant agriculture country based in animal rearing. As per Article 48 and 51A (g) it is expected from the state government that they should take action to get a legal entity for cow in this country.”
While Article 48 of the Constitution says the State should take steps for preserving and improving the breeds, and prohibiting the slaughter of cows and calves and other milch and draught cattle, Article 51A(g) speaks of protecting the natural environment and having compassion for living creatures.
“It is expected from the government that it should declare cow as national animal and for this purpose the Chief Secretary and Advocate General of state are declared legal custodians of cow,” the judge said in his order.
The direction was made while the court was hearing the Hingonia Gaushala matter. Over a hundred cows had perished at the government-run cowshed in Jaipur last year.
The bench also granted liberty to any person or class of persons to approach court with a plea in a PIL to declare cow as a national animal.
The direction came at a time when many states are protesting the government’s decision to impose ban on the slaughter of cattle, primarily cows, for commercial purposes and the Madras High Court staying for four months the Centre’s contentious notification on the matter.
Talking to reporters outside the court after passing the order, Justice Sharma also presented a unique theory on the mating of peacocks, the national bird.
In reference to his verdict, he said “peacock too has his qualities. He is a life-long celibate. He does not indulge in sex with peahen. The peahen gives birth after it gets impregnated with the tears of the peacock. A peacock or a peahen is then born. … Lord Krishna used peacock’s feather for celibacy of the bird.”
Elaborating on his order on granting of national animal status to the cow, Justice Sharma said “the law has originated from religion. Religion has not come out of the law.”
He also said the bovine “nourishes sick persons and keeps the environment clean. It also provides anti-biotics in its milk” which is used in Ayurvedic medicines.