In an unusual development, Hansraj College under DU has established a cow centre on campus.
Read further to find out more.
One of the most prestigious institutions under DU, Hansraj College has a NIRF ranking of 14. This year, however, it has done a unique and highly controversial addition to its bio- cow protection and research centre. The authorities have named the body the Swami Dayanand Saraswati Gau-Samwardhan ewam Anusandhan Kendra. Although it began with one cow, college principal Dr. Rama has indicated towards a capacity extension “if the study that is done proves to be useful and beneficial”.
Why the Centre?
The Centre will not just do “research on many elements of the cow,” according to the principal, but it will also supply “pure milk and ghee” for the students. Furthermore, the principal plans to use the milk and ghee products for the campus’s monthly ‘havan’ or prayer ceremony.
“Ours is a DAV Trust college with the Arya Samaj as its foundation. We hold a havan on the first day of the month, which is open to all teaching and non-teaching staff and students, in keeping with tradition. We congratulate all of the persons who had birthdays in that month during that (havan). Every month, we must travel to the market to purchase the items required to feed the flame, such as pure ghee”, she stated. Dr. Rama also added that with the centre, the college can now be “self-sufficient” in havan requirements.
However, the centre has been the source of intense controversy, especially with accusations from student groups. SFI Hansraj has alleged that the gaushala was built on property allocated for a women’s hostel. SFI (Students’ Federation of India) is a student political outfit of the CPI(M). The college now only has a men’s hostel. SFI Hansraj has also since released a statement on the issue. The statement reads:
“SFI Hansraj unequivocally condemns and opposes the development of a GauShala… on the same location that was set aside for a women’s dormitory, which has been on hold for years… We find it repulsive that our college management prioritizes the ‘preservation and promotion’ of cows over the needs of struggling female students whose interests are being neglected as a result of such a ridiculous choice”.
Principal Dr. Rama refuted these claims, citing the space insufficient for the proposed 100-student women’s dormitory. She also added that the hostel does not have “exclusive use of that location”. Furthermore, the hostel’s construction would require the college to go through a lot of red tapes and redesign the college’s master plan. All of this would need the approval of the municipal corporation.