New Delhi: Following the death of 200 cows in a goshala run by Chhattisgarh BJP leader Harish Verma, another 90 cow carcasses were found today in two other cowsheds run by him.
Hindustan Times reported said that a team of veterinary doctors found 70 carcasses of cows at Phoolchandra goshala in Godmarra village and 20 at Mayuri goshala in Rano – both villages are in Durg district, about 15 kms from Shagun goshala in Rajpur, where the 200 dead cows were found yesterday.
Residents of Rajpur as well as state officials blamed Verma, who is the BJP’s vice president in the nagar panchayat of Jamul, for the deaths of cows. He was arrested on Friday for “breach of trust and negligence”.
The deaths are due to the lack of food and water, reported the Indian Express on Saturday. Villagers told the Indian Express that at least 200 cows had died over the last week.
Verma told the Indian Express, “I have been running this goshala since 2010. I can’t respond to unsubstantiated allegations, but only 16 cows had died in the last two days. The cows sent here are old and infirm, and there is no shortage of food and water. I have done nothing wrong. It rained two days ago and a wall collapsed, which is why they died.”
When a five-member team from the state’s veterinary department visited the goshala however, they said the deaths were not caused by any wall collapse. “It is clear that these deaths were because of lack of fodder and water. When we were feeding them, they were herding around the food like they have been hungry for days. Since we came here yesterday, the situation has improved,” Dr. M.K. Chawla told the Indian Express on Friday.
Verma however claimed that his party’s own government did not release the annual grants for the maintenance of the goshalas in a state where cow slaughter is banned, according to the Indian Express report. “There are meant to be 220 cows, but there are 600. The government is meant to give me Rs 10 lakh per year to maintain the goshala. But they have not paid for the past two years. I haven’t got the Rs 10 lakh for last year, and whule you are meant to give some money every three months, I haven’t got any this year. I wrote to the Chhattisgarh Gau Seva Aayog in December and March about this,” he said.
The Shagun goshala is in terrible condition, as described by the reports, with hundreds of weak and hungry cows with their ribs showing, amidst the carcasses of the dead ones.