City residents may soon have to shell out cow cess on electricity, liquor and new vehicles. Chandigarh Municipal Corporation has proposed imposition of cow cess on various services on the lines of Punjab for protection and maintenance of the animals in the city sheds.
If approved in the General House on Friday, the residents may have to shell out cow cess on power bills, country liquor, whiskey and beer, besides four-wheelers and two-wheeler sold within the municipal limits. As per the proposed agenda, if Chandigarh adopts The Punjab Prohibition of Cow Slaughter Act, 1955, one will have to shell out Rs 500 while buying a new four-wheeler, and Rs 200 on a new two-wheeler. On electricity used within the MC limits, one will have to shell out 2 paise per unit. On country liquor, whiskey and beer, it will be Rs 5, Rs 10 and Rs 5 per bottle respectively.
As per Section 7 of the Punjab Act, “The state government or the local authority, if so authorised, may levy such fee as may be prescribed for care and maintenance of uneconomic cows in the institution.”
Municipal Commissioner K K Yadav told Chandigarh Newsline that once the House approves it, the proposal would be sent to the administration. “There is an expenditure of over Rs 2 crore on the cows in the gaushalas (cow sheds). If the House approves it, the concerned agencies will collect the cess and give it to the Municipal Corporation,” Yadav said.
The MC runs three gaushalas in sectors 25 and 45, besides Maloya village. There are two cattle pounds in Industrial Area, Phase 1, used for housing the impounded cattle from the city. Presently, there are 1,000 cattle in the pounds managed by the Chandigarh MC. The gaushalas are being managed by NGOs. The Municipal Corporation Chandigarh pays electricity and water charges for the gaushalas at Sector 45 and Maloya.