Amid the countrywide uproar over cow protection, at least 18 cows died of suffocation in a shelter home in Chhattisgarh’s Balodabazar district, PTI reported on Sunday. The death of cows happened in last few days in the shelter home managed by a village panchayat in the area. The remains of the cows were recovered from Rohasi village on August 3.
The incident came to light after authorities received information from locals about carcasses of dead animals being transported for burial about 70 km away from the shelter home. “Preliminary investigation revealed that the cows were locked in a room for the past few days and they died of suffocation,” a senior official was quoted as saying by PTI.
The cattle were reportedly captured from a field in the area a few days ago after which some of them were tied in the open while others were locked in a room in ‘kanji house’. However, after some time when no one came to claim the cattle, villagers freed those tied in the open but forgot about those which were locked in the shelter home run by the village panchayat.
Some of the people noticed a foul smell on August 3 after which the dead cows were discovered in the room.
While the villagers were transporting the carcasses on tractors for disposal, someone informed the local officials who reached the spot, he said. After the autopsy, all the carcasses were disposed of in a deep pit dug in the village. Adequate measures have been taken to avoid the spread of any epidemic in the village due to the incident, the collector said. “The cattle remained closed for four days in a room that was not large enough to accommodate 18 animals. Therefore, they died of suffocation,” he said.
This is not the first time that a large number of cows have died in Chhattisgarh due to negligence. The state government had come under intense fire from the opposition when cows had died in state-run shelters last year. According to the state officials, over 200 cows had died in three shelters between August 16 and 18 last year allegedly due to starvation and lack of care. At least 27 cows alone had died in one of the government-aided private shelter run by a local BJP leader in Durg district.
(With PTI inputs)