The Hindutva’s cow “misadventure” could cost the country Rs 1.5 lakh crore, news portal Quint said on Friday in its opinion piece.
The aggressive Hindutva obsession has hit the vulnerable groups the hardest as estimate suggest that 70 percent of livestock is held by small and marginal farmers and landless labourers. “Is that the reason why the countryside is not very pleased with the ruling establishment?,” the article said as it gave an elaborate analysis of the economic downturn for the industry in general and for the rural farm sector in particular.
“Is rural India headed for a long spell of burre din?,” it said, claiming that farm income is stagnating and the attempted diversification is facing a Hindutva roadblock.
The campaign of the right-wing outfits has not only led to an exponential rise in the cattle population but has dealt a big blow to farmers. The cost of upkeep of the unproductive cattle could alone come to about 86,000 crore if governments across the country take the burden of building shelters and keep all the surplus cattle there, according to Mayank Mishra, the author of the article.
Livestock has been one of the key drivers of rural economy and contribution of cattle to the GDP alone is estimated at Rs 3 lakh crore. Assuming a value erosion of at least 20 percent, the hit to the rural economy will be to the tune of Rs 60,000 crore. “This is happening at a time when farm income has stagnated,” the article said. The decline in meat export could also mean a loss of Rs 5000 crore.