SHGs will get ‘stranded’ cows from military farms

Anvita Srivastava & Mubarak Ansari
Thursday, 8 August 2019

According to army officials, the military farms are holding a large number of cattle at Pimpri, Deolali (Nashik) and Belgaum. 

PUNE: Women Self-Help Groups (SHGs) in Beed district and government institutions will get cattle from military farms. Army officials said even after seven months of payments, the cattle have not been picked up by the Maharashtra Government’s Department of Animal Husbandry. 

To improve teeth to tail ratio, the Indian Army had decided on closure of military farms. As per the Central Government order, the military farm cattle have to be transferred to the Central/State government department or State Dairy Cooperative on a token payment of Rs 1,000 per animal. The cattle include hybrid Frieswal cows. 

According to army officials, the military farms are holding a large number of cattle at Pimpri, Deolali (Nashik) and Belgaum. 

The state governments of Manipur, Madhya Pradesh and others have collected 1,309 cattle from military farms of Maharashtra and Telangana. The Maharashtra Animal Husbandry Department has been approached by Army authorities on numerous occasions since 2018. The State Government had deposited an amount of Rs 29.14 lakh on January 29, 2019 for lifting of 2,914 cattle from farms at Pimpri, Deolali and Ahmednagar. 

“The Animal Husbandry Department has been reluctant to take over the cattle, apparently, due to lack of infrastructure. Hence, 3,084 cattle are still held at Pimpri, Deolali and Belgaum military farms,” an officer told Sakal Times. 

The officials said this has put additional burden on them. There are 1,661 cattle at Pimpri military farms, where a staff of 46 is taking care of them. The cost of maintenance of each animal per day is Rs 330. There are 828 cattle at Deolali Farm, where a staff of 14 is looking after them. The cost of maintenance of each animal per day is Rs 336.

Chief Executive Officer of Maharashtra Livestock Development Board Dr D Parkale said, “Around 269 cattle have already been lifted and kept in Kathawade Farm in Pune while movement of other cattle will be completed in next 20 days. We have arranged for cattle in a government’s Bull Motherfarm in Varsa-Gadchiroli and farm of Dr Punjabrao Deshmukh Krishi Vidyapeeth, Akola. Some cattle will be kept in a government initiative-Gondwana in Gadchiroli which is for tribals and they will be given to a farmers producers company.” 

Talking about the delay, Parkale said, “Before we relocate these cattle, it is important that all animals undergo testing and it is important to create the infrastructure to accommodate them. Finally, it has been done and we are in the process of transporting these cattle.”

COWS TO BE GIVEN TO SHG
Laxminarayan Mishra, Commissioner of Animal Husbandry, said, “The Maharashtra Livestock Development Board (MLDB) is heading this project and a meeting regarding the same has been conducted and in 15 to 20 days, transportation of these cattle will be conducted. Apart from universities and government farms, some cattle will be given to women SHGs in Beed district.” 

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