Protesting against the menace of stray animals, some farmers here herded cows into the district administrative complex on Wednesday and demanded urgent action to address the issue.Led by district president of ‘All India Kisan Sabha’, Balvir Singh Jadla, the protesting farmers tied the cattle at the gate leading to the Deputy Commissioner’s office. Addressing a rally on the occasion, farmer leaders including Balbir Singh Jadla, district secretary Nirmal Singh
Ghumman and senior CPM leader Maha Singh Rouri slammed the state government and the district administration for ‘turning a deaf ear’ to their demand of taking steps for protecting their crops from wild and stray animals.They demanded construction of cattle sheds at Tehsil level instead of district level only, which is the current policy. They claimed the number of stray animals had risen to alarming proportions in the state due to various reasons. “Earlier, cow and other milch cattle were given a lot of respect and taken care of even after they had outlived their utility. But now, except for lip-sympathy, they are abandoned,” said the farmer leaders.
Such animals were cause of many fatal accidents in the area, Jadla said. Ghumman and Rouri demanded implementation of the Swaminanthan Commission report to lessen farmers’ sufferings, waiving farmers’ loans, and urgent measures to address farm crises which lead farmers to commit suicides. “On an average around 50 farmers in the country were committing suicides on a daily basis,” said Rouri.
The protesters also raised the issue of rising incidents of dog bites, whose victims, they said, are often children. They submitted a memorandum of their demands to the district administration. Deputy Commissioner Vipul Ujwal on being contacted said the district administration was expecting to find a solution to the problem within a month or so.
“Though we have built a cattle pond at Dilwarpur village for proper upkeep of stray cattle, the administration is also tying up with various NGOs to minimize the menace,” he said. The DC said municipal authorities would be asked to look into the issue of stray dogs and asked to take steps for their sterilization.
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