New Delhi: The Modi government’s cow protection agency announced Tuesday that it will conduct an online exam next month to boost mass awareness about indigenous bovines. It also discussed a domestic clinical trial that it claims has associated cow milk and its derivatives as well as cow urine and dung — administered with ayurveda — with 96 per cent efficacy in treating mild Covid-19.
The announcements were made at a press conference of the Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog (RKA) addressed by its chief Vallabhbhai Kathiria.
Constituted by the government in 2019, the RKA is aimed at ensuring the conservation, preservation, protection and development of cows and their progeny, and is tasked with giving direction to cattle development programmes with an emphasis on livelihood generation for small and marginal farmers, women and youth entrepreneurs.
The Aayog is overseen by the Animal Husbandry Ministry.
Addressing the press conference, Kathiria said the awareness exam — titled the ‘Kamdhenu Gau Vigyan Prachar Prasar Examination’ or the cow science awareness exam — will take place on 25 February. The exam will be voluntary, but Kathiria stated that the RKA has sent written requests to the chief ministers and education ministers of all states to conduct the exam.
Explaining the rationale behind holding the exam, he said “gau mata” or “mother cow” is revered in India, but not much has been done to educate the masses about its qualities over the past few years.
“Gau mata is a respectable word but it seems to be confined to shastras only. The kind of awareness that should be there is not present, which is why we decided to conduct this exam,” he added.
“This will not only serve as an informative exam but also make Indians aware of the unexplored potential and business opportunities a cow can offer, even after it stops giving milk.”
The environmental, health and economic benefits afforded by cows are immense if used properly, he said.
“Its so-called waste products like cow dung and cow urine, which are cheap and abundantly available, are biodegradable and environment-friendly. Hence, these can be gainfully used by cow entrepreneurs to make cow-rearing sustainable, which in turn can contribute towards economic growth of the country,” he added.
The exam, he said, will be conducted in four categories — Primary to Class 8, Class 9 to Class 12, at college-level, and for the general public, including foreign citizens.
The hour-long exam, he said, will be conducted in English and 12 regional languages.
“The syllabus as well as other literature and reference books on cows, which will be recommended on the website of the Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog, will help the examinees prepare for the exam. Blogs, videos and other select reading material will be uploaded on our official website. Results will be immediately declared on the website of RKA,” he added, promising certificates to all examinees.
“Successful meritorious candidates will be given prizes and certificates afterwards.”
Cow and Covid
A clinical trial on 800 patients, Kathiria said, had found 96 per cent efficacy in treating Covid-19 patients using ‘panchagavya’ — the five main products derived from cows, including milk, urine, dung, curd/dahi and ghee — and ayurvedic products like kadha and Sanjeevani vati.
According to Kathiria, the trial was conducted between June 2020 and October 2020. Its results will soon be published in a journal, for which the Aayog will be getting in touch with the AYUSH Ministry, he said.
While 200 people took part in the trial in Rajkot (four others were taken out of the trial after they developed complications), an equal number each participated in Vadodara, Varanasi and Mumbai, he added.
“The clinical trials were held keeping ICMR guidelines in mind. During the treatment, no allopathic medicine was given to the patients. All the patients in these four places recovered completely — some in four days, some in 10 and others in 14 days,” he said, adding that the patients did not have a serious form of the disease.
“They were either admitted in medical colleges, or designated places. They were monitored closely. In the morning, they were given kadha, milk, haldi and medicines made of panchgavya (milk, ghee, butter, cow urine and cow dung),” he added.
Asked if the patients had given their approvals for the trial, Kathiria said all of them had furnished it in writing. Whether to go for the Covid vaccine, he said, would be the choice of the trial participants.