Skip to main content

Gujarat Dalits rally against tougher cow slaughter law, ask 182 MLAs to punish those forcing cows to consume plastics

By Our Representative
In a unique protest in Gujarat’s Surendranagar town, Dalit rights activists on Wednesday handed over 182 bottles filled with plastics taken out of cows’ carcasses to the district collector, who was told to give these to each of the 182 MLAs of the state, asking them to explain to them as to who should be held responsible for the death of these cows.
The protest follows anger among sections of Dalits over the Gujarat state assembly passing a law having the punishment of life imprisonment to anyone found guilty of cow slaughter. Last year, four Dalits youths were tied with chains attached to an SUV and thrashed in a procession in Una town on suspicion cow slaughter, though they were involved in their hereditary job of skinning dead cows.
Natubhai Parmar, handing over plaque
Led by Natubhai Parmar of the Navnirman Trust, a local people’s organization, the bottled were handed over to the district collector along with a memorandum on a gold-coloured plaque after Dalit representatives from 12 states and several Gujarat districts took out a five kilometre long rally of a cow replica, whose belly carried 182 kg of plastics.
The plastics, said the organizers, was taken out of cows’ carcasses by Dalit skinners. Carried on a truck, the cow replica followed a tractor with four bundles of plastics, also said to have been taken out of dead cows’ bellies, dangling on a wooden structure for people to see. “Each bundle weighs between 25 and 35 kg”, Parmar, with mike in his hand, explained on busy Surendranagar streets to the people who would gather to listen to him.
Shot into prominence in August 2016 after he dumped truckloads of cow carcasses in front of the district collector’s office, telling officials to “dispose them of” as Dalit cow skinners belonging to the Rohit community were being branded as cow slaughterers in Gujarat and were being beaten up, this was Parmar’s second unusual protest in less than a year’s time.
Handing over 182 bottled and the plaque to a district official, Parmar said, “We want the Gujarat government to provide enough grazing land to the cows so that they do not die by consuming plastics. A thousand times more cows dies on consuming plastics than by cow slaughter. Most of the grazing land has been handed over to industrialists, and cows have been left to die eating plastics.”
Parmar warned, “If the state government does not announce any plan to return grazing land to the cows in accordance with the norm it has fixed per cow within a month, we will be obliged to start another round of protests – this time by bringing abandoned cows, found on streets, to government offices, where they should be taken care.”
Bottles with cow carcasses
“Cows do not want to be called mother. They do not need cow vigilantes protection. They need their grazing lands back”, he added.
A surprised Gujarat government official, identified as additional district collector, who took the gold-coloured plaque from Parmar along with 182 bottles, told someone whom he met later, “It’s a good idea to send the plastics to all MLAs. They must know that stricter laws of lifetime imprisonment for cow slaughter shouldn’t just apply to those who eat beef. It should also apply to those who have made the cows to consume plastics, along with the leftover of food.”
Gujarat’s largest Dalit rights NGO Navsarjan Trust founder Martin Macwan, who backed Parmar’s unique protest, said, “More such programmes are being planned in other districts, starting with Rajkot and Bhavnagar.” He added, “Those who have joined in the rally here with placards in their hands having names of MLAs to be handed over the bottles are from Rajkot, Bhavnagar, Patan, Junagardh, Surendranagar, Ahmedabad and Bharuch districts.”

Comments

TRENDING

Impact of state repression? Kashmir's 65% people prefer independence: Cambridge study

By Rajiv Shah 
Even as the Government of India’s controversial move to abrogate Article 370 of the Constitution and bifurcate Jammu and Kashmir (J&K) into two union territories is not only refusing to down die but has acquired international dimensions, a recent study, published by the Cambridge University Press, has claimed “pro-independence attitudes” among that 65% of Kashmiris, warning, this sentiment worsens when the state machinery resorts “repressive violence”.

Hindus to be 'sent' to Kashmir? Despite Israeli settlements, peace eludes the region

By Anand K Sahay*
Curfew, news and communications blackout, transportation shut-down... News reports from Kashmir are worrying. So are the views relayed through the media, especially television. Old-fashioned repression seems to be consorting comfortably with expressions of concern “for our Kashmiri brethren”. We are looking at Orwell’s 1984 in the making.

Dholera 'inundated': Gujarat govt tries selling low lying area as top smart city site

Counterview Desk
Even as the Dholera Special Investment Region Regional Development Authority (DSIRDA) of the Gujarat government was busy organising a junket for Gujarat-based journalists for the area sought to be sold as an ideal special investment region (SIR) for industrialists, well-known farmers' activist Sagar Rabari has wondered why no investor has so far agreed to put in money in an area situated in Ahmedabad district along the Gulf of Khambhat.

Congress' anti-democratic laws led to Modi govt's 'Constitutional' changes: Scholars

Counterview Desk
A large number of academics* said to be belonging to several Indian and international institutions, even as taking strong exception to the Narendra Modi government's alleged move to amend the Constitution through "illegitimate" means, have taken strong exception to their colleagues in academia who we have become "all too accustomed to adopting a calculated silence in the face of such indignities."

Kashmir normal? Schoolboys, teenagers being arbitrarily picked up, detained: Report

Counterview Desk
A four-person team, consisting of Jean Dr├Ęze, well-known development economist; Kavita Krishnan, who is with the Communist Party of India (Marxist-Leninist); Maimoona Mollah of the All India Democratic Women's Association (AIDWA); and Vimal Bhai of the National Alliance of People's Movements (NAPM), back from a five-day fact-finding mission (August 9-13) from Kashmir, has said that people they spoke to “expressed their pain, anger, and sense of betrayal against the Government of India.”
In a report, “Kashmir Caged”, released along with a short eight-minute film, they said, the abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A, dissolution of the state of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), and bifurcating it into two Union Territories, is not being supported by anyone they met, except for BJP spokesperson on Kashmir affairs Ashwani Kumar Chrungoo, who claimed 46% vote share in J&K.
Excerpts from the report: When our flight landed, and the airlines staff announced that passeng…

Modi's Gujarati mind? Why govt move to 'sell-off' defence PSUs isn't in national interest

By Sandeep Pandey*
The Standing Committee on Defence, 2017-18, of the 16th Lok Sabha highlights the idea of Buy Indian-IDDM (Indigenously Designed Developed and Manufactured). The Committee expressed concern over the import content of equipments produced and developed by Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), Ordnance Factories (OFs) and defence Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) because of the dependence it creates for military hardware on foreign suppliers.

Central Gujarat effluent channel 'releasing' highly polluted industrial wastewater: PM told

Counterview Desk
Senior environmentalists of the Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti (PSS), Vadodara, Rohit Prajapati and Krishnakant, in an open letter to the Prime Minister, the Gujarat chief minister, the Gujarat chief secretary, and senior Government of India and Gujarat government officials dealing with environment, pollution and climate change have said that the authorities’ response their pleas to take action against the leakages and flow of polluted wastewater from the effluent channels of Central Gujarat industrial areas has met with complete inertia.

Can't go to court with RTI information, rule Ahmedabad authorities: Kankaria accident

By Pankti Jog*
In a shocking reply to an application filed by me, the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC) authorities have said that the information provided under the Right to Information (RT) Act should be used in court or in a judicial process. The Act is known to be a major tool that enables citizens to seek certified copies of documents, records from any public authority of state and Central government within 30 days, as per provisions of the Act.

Quit India Movement 'betrayal' and dubious role of Hindu Mahasabha, RSS leaders

By Shamsul Islam*
After the recent guillotine of Article 370, Hindutva ideologue Ram Madhav, while celebrating the occasion stated that it was honouring of the sacrifices of Dr Shyam Prasad Mukherjee and thousands others who laid down their lives for its removal. It is to be noted that Dr Mukherjee was a cadre of RSS and was groomed into a Hindutva leader by another Hindutva icon, VD Savarkar.

Strategy for united struggle against Hindutva 'fascism': Ideological silence is 'no option'

By Dr Bhabani Shankar Nayak*
Electoral alliance and opportunism of national and regional political parties, neoliberal economic marginalisation and soft secular Hindutva line pandering to Hindu majoritarianism laid the foundation of Hindutva fascism in post-colonial India.