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Himachal Pradesh HC directs state govt to file fresh status report on opening of 'Gaushalas'

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In a matter regarding protection of stray cattle in Himachal Pradesh, the High Court on Thursday directed the state Government to file a fresh status report with regard to the opening of Gaushalas and Gausadans in the state.

A Division Bench comprising the Chief Justice L Narayana Swamy and Justice Dharam Chand Chaudhary passed the orders on a petition filed by Dr Nitin Vyas of Shimla district.

The Petitioner has alleged in the petition that the State of Himachal Pradesh is grappling with the problem of stray cattle as people abandon their cattle when they grow older or unproductive.

The petitioner has further alleged that there are around 32,000 stray cattle in the state which can be seen roaming on narrow hilly roads, as well as Highways, which causes hundreds of accidents every year, resulting in loss of human lives as well as the loss of life of the innocent animals.

The court in its earlier order dated October 16, had directed the Government of Himachal Pradesh to submit a report regarding steps taken by it to open 'Gosadans' or Cow Sanctuaries and the facilities provided in them.

In compliance to the said order, the state government filed the status report that in respect of certain districts, steps were taken by floating the tenders and also earmarking places for acquiring land for the purpose of construction of cow sanctuaries and the said process may be over by another two months.

It was also stated in the court that immediate steps have also been taken by identifying the lands in various panchayats for construction of temporary or permanent sheds for Gaushalas in order to prevent the possibility of accidents due to stray cattle.

During the course of hearing, the Court said that keeping in view of the winter season, State Government should take some immediate steps to dispatch the cattle from the highways so that the accidents caused due to the stray cattle could be avoided.

The Court observed that the status report filed, was in respect of six districts only and thus directed the State Government to file a fresh status report within four weeks, including all the districts in the State.

The next hearing in the matter has been posted in the last week of February next year.

The petitioner has sought directions to the State government to comply with the orders issued by the High Court regarding the steps to be taken to curb the menace of the stray cattle in the state of Himachal Pradesh.

The petitioner has also requested that a 'village common land' be identified by the authorities and Mahila Mandal members should be roped in and the Panchayats should be directed to keep their jurisdiction free of stray cattle.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, November 07 2019. 22:32 IST