New Delhi: Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Saturday stressed on the need to protect cows, saying even the Mughals, who ruled India between the 16th and 18th centuries, knew that they could not rule with open support to cow slaughter.
"Whatever little information I have about Mughal rulers... I can say that the Mughal rulers were aware of this fact. They understood that by killing cows and giving open support to cow slaughter they cannot rule for a long period," he said.
The minister even quoted the founder of the Mughal dynasty Babur. "Even Babur, in his will, has written, we can`t do two things at one time. Either rule the hearts of people or eat cow`s meat. Only one thing can happen... They cannot be done together."
Speaking at a conference on conservation of cows, the minister said the British rulers failed to understand this aspect which led to India`s first war of independence.
"After the British came to India, the way Indian tradition had to be respected... it was not done.
"In fact, it became worse. One of the main reasons for the first war of independence (1857) was cow fat which was used in cartridges. This shows the faith of people towards cow," he said.
Forest Minister Prakash Javadekar said the government was mulling cultivating grass in forest areas under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme and making the grass available to farmers in villages without charging for it.
"The scheme shall be made effective soon," he added.
The minister further said the government was considering increasing grants offered for setting up "goshala" (cow-sheds) from the current Rs.22 lakh.
Javadekar identified increasing cow milk productivity as another challenge before the government and lauded the role played by the Bharatiya Janata Party government in Haryana, which has announced a subsidy.
"Until what time our cows will continue to produce milk up to 2 litres? We need to increase it.
"The Haryana government has taken initiatives to encourage those who increase cow milk production from two litres to six litres with a reward of Rs.10,000 and thereon for more production. They are also offering subsidy to purchase cows which is a progressive incentivisation," he said.