Thursday, Oct 06, 2022

Tripura: 250 cows rescued by BSF stolen from Gaushala

The gaushala at Tripura’s Devipur village, 22 kilometers from Agartala, hogged headlines in July this year, when 159 cows died due to malnourishment and hyperthermia.

tripura gaushala, tripura bsf cows rescue, indo bangla border cows rescued tripura gaushala, latest news, tripura news, indian express Over 600 cows are now huddled in a 4 acre plot of land allotted to them

Over 250 cows rescued by the Border Security Force (BSF) from livestock smugglers along Indo-Bangla border were stolen from a ‘gaushala’ (cow shelter) at Bishalgarh in Tripura’s Sipahijala district in the last six months.

The gaushala at Tripura’s Devipur village, 22 kilometers from Agartala, hogged headlines in July this year, when 159 cows died due to malnourishment and hyperthermia.

Dhyan Foundation, a Delhi-based NGO which manages the gaushala, is struggling with a staggering number of animals coming in on a daily basis, as over 600 cows are now huddled in a 4 acre plot of land allotted to them. The NGO runs 28 ‘gaushala’ across the country. Tripura happens to be their only ‘gaushala’ experiment in North East India so far.

Speaking to, R. Latha Devi, a volunteer with Delhi-based Dhyan Foundation, said the ‘gaushala’ is manned by two NGO volunteers and a few locally recruited helpers. It has no security personnel, rendering it helpless at the mercy of smugglers, who often make it a point to steal livestock rescued by BSF at the border.

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“We have 600 cows in our gaushala now. As per our reports, 250-300 cows were stolen in last six months. Among these, over 150 cows were stolen from in last two months alone. Often armed smugglers come in and steal the animals”, Latha Devi informed adding that CCTV cameras installed in the wake of thefts confirmed the claims.

Meanwhile, 61 cows died in the gaushala in last two months as well. Most of these deaths were caused by plastic found in their stomachs, Foot and Mouth Disease, worms and hyperthermia caused by heavy rains.

The gaushala authorities complained with the local police station about theft menace but they say the cops have been less than cooperative.


Officer in charge of Madhupur police station Bishnupada Bhowmik told this correspondent: “We have received FIR about cattle theft from the cow shelter. We have rescued seven cows and handed over to them. But they could not produce any comprehensive report on number of animals sheltered in their gaushala”.

Cows rescued from Srinagar, Kamthana, Kulubari, Fatikcherra, Harihardola, Kaiadhepa and few other Border Out Posts (BOP) with Bangladesh are sent to this ‘gaushala’. India shares a 4,096.7 km border with Bangladesh, out of which Tripura shares 856 Km border with the neighbouring country. Patches of the border are still unfenced to the day. A large amount of narcotics, garments, plastic products and livestock are nabbed by the Border Security Forces (BSF) in the midst of smuggling bids every month.

While cattle are rescued every other day by BSF, their destination at Devipur Gaushala is way too cramped to house more.


All these rescued animals were supposed to be taken over by the state government according to a previous Supreme Court order in a hearing of writ petition filed by Akhil Bharat Krishi Gosewa Sangh, where the apex court ordered state governments to take ‘necessary action’ to stop cattle smuggling and take care of the livestock.

But after Tripura government authorities failed to take possession of the rescued cattle, the NGO approached to shoulder the job. They were later allotted 4 acres land amidst over 360 acre forest area at Devipur village in Sipahijala district as per an understanding with ARDD.

“This 4 acre land is nearly saturated to accommodate any more animals. We sought the state government’s Department of Animal Rearing and Development (ARDD) to allot us more land. They proposed a 20 acre plot of land at Sabroom in southern Tripura but it is not suitable”, the NGO volunteers told this publication.

First published on: 28-10-2019 at 03:55:51 pm
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