Amid the controversy over beef consumption, Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij has begun an online poll on whether the cow should be the national animal in place of the tiger. Till Monday evening, 329 people had cast their vote, of whom, 88 per cent were in favour of the cow.
Vij has been advocating the idea, of making cow the national animal, through tweets but launched the online poll on Twitter on Monday.
A total of 288 people voted in favour of the cow, while 41 have backed the tiger.
Vij defended his poll, saying the cow needs protection as the tiger can protect itself. “Once cow is made the national animal, there would not be any laws required for its protection. There is a mafia that is involved in slaughtering cows. Like the peacock is protected by virtue of being the national bird, the same will become the case with the cow. The cow is useful for humanity as all people drink its milk,” Vij said. He added that he would raise the issue with the government.
The minister’s poll is in line with the BJP government’s policy in the state. Haryana had in March this year, passed the “Gauvansh Sanrakshan and Gausamvardhan Bill” ensuring stringent punishment for those who slaughter cows. The act provides for imprisonment of up to 10 years for slaughter of cows and a penalty of up to Rs 1 lakh.