Celebrate this V-Day as Cow Hug Day, says AWBI
CHENNAI: "Surprise your sweetheart this Valentine's day," is one regular promo we get to see every Valentine's Day. This year, however, the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) has raised the bar, surprising animal lovers with an appeal to hug cows.
The premier animal welfare body under the Union ministry, in a circular to observe February 14 as Cow Hug Day, said: "Given the immense benefits from raising a cow, hugging a cow will bring emotional richness and hence increase our individual and collective happiness. Therefore, all cow lovers may also celebrate February 14 as Cow Hug Day keeping in mind the importance of mother cows and making life happy and full of positive energy."
"Vedic traditions are almost on the verge of extinction due to the progress of western culture over time. The dazzle of western civilisation has made our physical culture and heritage almost forgotten," said Dr SK Dutta, secretary, AWBI.
With some studies claiming that cow-hugging therapy is good for mental health and reducing stress, the initiative has been welcomed by animal lovers as well. "The aim is to encourage people to show compassion towards animals. The cow is the backbone of Indian culture and rural economy. Not just cows, we can hug any animal and express our love towards them," said Dinesh Baba, an animal activist.
Pointing to illegal cattle slaughtering reported across the country, activists mentioned there are several occasions celebrated such as International Dog Day, Tiger Day, and Pet Day.
"Even the Constitution states it as a fundamental duty to be kind and loving to all animals. So instead of making it a one-day thing, let's show love and compassion to them every day," said Arun Prasanna, People for Cattle in India.
"Similarly, this initiative should be welcomed and not misused for political unrest or communal conflicts. I hope there is no reservation in celebrating the event as one section will say they will hug only native cows," she opined.
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