Holy Cow: Hindus Urge Cull Alternative

August 7, 2007

Author: Staff Writer

Source: Channel 4 News


Hindus have asked government to "explore other options" rather than slaughter cattle in the wake of the foot and mouth outbreak.

About 150 cattle have already been culled after the discovery of the disease at two farms in Surrey. Following the last foot and mouth outbreak in 2001, seven million sheep and cattle were slaughtered - prompting fears of a similar cull this summer.

The religious significance of cows for Hindus was highlighted by the recent case of Shambo, a sacred bull in Wales which was slaughtered after contracting TB.

Monks from Shambo's Hindu temple unsuccessfully campaigned for the revered animal to be saved. The prospect of thousands of cows being killed has led the Hindu Forum of Britain to urge government to avoid using slaughter to combat foot and mouth.

A spokesman for the forum, which represents 270 Hindu organisations from throughout the UK, told Channel 4 News online: "The Hindu faith holds the belief the all life is sacred, and would do everything in order to protect the sanctity of life.