‘Let indigenous cows, goat graze in mountains, forests’

Staff Reporter

The government must take steps to ensure that indigenous cows that usually graze in herds (‘kidai maadu’) and goats (kidai aadu) are allowed to graze in mountains, forests and pasture fields, said P. Kabilan, researcher at Thozhuvam, a non-governmental organisation that aims to protect indigenous cows and bulls.

He told reporters here on Friday along with rearers of indigenous cows and goats that a welfare board should be started for the benefit of herders. A special 10% quota must be reserved at veterinary colleges for herders. The dung of ‘kidai maadu’ and ‘kidai aadu’ are rich manure that is highly useful for agriculture. “Every day tonnes of dung generated across south Tamil Nadu is procured by farmers from Kerala. But there is less patronage for the dung by organic farmers of Tamil Nadu. So, the government must take steps to procure the dung from farmers and sell it at fertilizer stores, he said.

Underground subways have to be constructed at national highways to ensure free movement of ‘kidai maadu’ and ‘kidai aadu.’

The government must make clear rules regarding the poromboke grazing lands. In 2001, the government issued an order stating that these lands must be utilised only for grazing of cattle. The Animal Husbandry Department must take steps to ensure that this is being strictly followed, said Mr. Kabilan.

One of the judgements of the Madras High Court stated that all waterbodies can be utilised by the farmers, herders and public of the particular region. But, at some places, there are difficulties in ensuring that cattle being allowed to drink water at these waterbodies. So, the government must take steps to address this problem, he added.

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