If you are a city-bred cow bhakt and want to own one without being responsible for its day-to-day care, the Haryana government may have a solution for you.

It is contemplating the establishment of cow shelters near cities in the State, where people can leave their cows and buffaloes to expert care.

“It’s quite like the ‘paying guest’ accommodation that most city people are familiar with, except that the guests here would be cattle,” said Haryana Agriculture Minister Om Prakash Dhankar. “Those who already own cattle or want to own cattle can make use of this proposed facility by paying a fee. The owner can pay for the space as well as for the cattle fodder.”

According to the Minister, the government is planning to set up dairies close to cities. In these dairies, some space would be exclusively kept aside for PG accommodation of cows and buffaloes. The details of the scheme are still being worked out.

What is not clear is whether this scheme would be exploited to address the issue of stray cattle, which has become a menace for road users in cities.

“The programme is being designed keeping in mind those who live in high-rise buildings in cities. We assume that many of those who earn a lot may want to own cattle, but have no place to keep them where they live. They can make use of this facility,” Dhankar said.

As the Minister envisages it, care-takers will look after animals in this PG accommodation. “The owners can avail their service by paying a fee towards salary, feed and rent for the space,” the Minister said.

Remote monitoring

“Technology today makes it possible for the continuous remote monitoring of the animal,” Dhankar said.

“An Italian company recently came out with a device costing ₹6,000, which when tied around the neck of the animal, would be able to monitor how much feed the animal has taken and how much milk it has given,” he noted.

If interested, “the owner can also collect milk of the animal from the dairy on a daily basis or sell it to the dairy. On weekends, if they wish, the owners can visit their cattle for doing pujas,” Dhankar explained.