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"Keeping in mind Articles 48 and 51A (g) of the Constitution and to provide legal entity for their proper protection and conservation of cow, it is expected from the government that cow is declared a national animal," Justice Mahesh Chandra Sharma said in a 145-page order.
Describing himself as a "Shiv bkaht", the judge, on the eve of his retirement, gave a ruling relating to the Hingonia Gaushala of Jaipur.
According to NGOs, over 500 cows had died at the Hingonia Bovine Animal Rehabilitation Centre in a span of 1-2 months in 2016 due to improper care.
The court said India was a predominantly agriculture-based country where animal husbandry played an important role.
The judge appointed the Chief Secretary and the Advocate General of Rajasthan as persons in loco parentis (custodians) for the protection and conservation of cows.
Additional Advocate General G.S. Gill said that they will "study the order of the court in detail first".
"We have yet to receive the copy of the order. These are more of observations by the court and these are not binding," Gill told IANS.
Justice Sharma meanwhile told IANS that neither he nor his judgement is anyway concerned with the beef controversy which is raging right now in the country.
"The suggestions I made today were the voice of my soul," he added.
"I delivered judgement in my judicial capacity. I am not concerned with any political party or parties," he said.