Allahabad HC cites scriptures, says cow killers deemed to rot in hell
LUCKNOW: A Lucknow bench of the Allahabad high court has asked the Centre to declare the cow “a protected national animal” and enact a central law for a ban on cow slaughter. It said as per the Puranas, “anyone who kills cows or allows others to kill them is deemed to rot in hell”. “India being a secular country, it’s important to respect all religions,” Justice Shamim Ahmed said.
Justice Shamim Ahmed drew heavily from Hindu texts to call for a ban on the slaughter of cows pitch for its protection while hearing the bail plea of a man accused of killing cattle. India being a secular country, it’s important to respect all religions, including Hinduism’s belief that the cow should be protected and respected because it represents divine and natural beneficence, Justice Ahmed said.
“This court also hope and trust that the central government may take appropriate decision to ban cow slaughtering in the country and to declare the same as ‘protected national animal’,” it said in its order on February 14. Most states have their own laws against cow slaughter, and sale and consumption of beef.
The HC made the observation while refusing to quash a criminal case against Mohammad Abdul Khaliq of Barabanki, who has been accused of cow slaughter and transporting the meat for sale.
The court referred to the importance of cows in rites of healing purification, penance of the ‘panchagavya’, the five products of milk, curd, butter, urine, and dung. Creator Brahma gave life to priests and cows at the same time so that the priests could recite religious scriptures and cows could afford ‘ghee’ as an offering in the rituals, it said.
“The cow is associated with various deities, notably Lord Shiva (whose steed is Nandi, a bull) Lord Indra (closely associated with Kamadhenu, the wish-fulfilling cow), Lord Krishna (a cowherd in his youth), and goddesses in general (because of the maternal attributes of many of them). The cow is the most sacred of all the animals of Hinduism. It is known as Kamadhenu, or the divine cow, and the giver of all desires,” the court said.
The HC bench said cows, according to Hinduism, emerged from the ocean of milk during Samudramanthan, the churning of the ocean by the gods and demons. “Her legs symbolise the four Vedas; her source of milk is four Purushartha (or objectives, i.e. dharma or righteousness, artha or material wealth, kama or desire and moksha or salvation); her horns symbolise the gods, her face the sun and moon, and her shoulders agni or the god of fire. She has also been described in other forms: Nanda, Sunanda, Surabhi, Susheela and Sumana,” the court said.