The exam, held by the Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog (RKA), is not based on science and is spreading superstition, Kerala Sasthra Sahithya Parishad (KSSP) said.

Person touching a bull on its foreheadImage for representation (Credits: Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog)
news Controversy Sunday, February 21, 2021 - 19:07

Kerala Sasthra Sahithya Parishad, a noted science forum in the state, has come out slamming the University Grants Commission (UGC) for its recent circular directing vice-chancellors of all universities in the country to encourage students to enroll for ‘Kamdhenu Gau Vigyan Prachar Prasar Exam’ or exam on “cow science”. The exam, being held by Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog (RKA), is not based on science and is spreading superstition, Kerala Sasthra Sahithya Parishad (KSSP) said citing the study material released for the exam.

The RKA, which comes under the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, was set up by the Union Government in February 2019 and is aimed at conservation, protection and development of cows and their progeny. Though the exam is not deemed as a compulsory one, KSSP stated that a Union government conducting such an exam and UGC issuing a circular for this, is part of the academic saffronisation.

The Union Government had on January 5, announced the ‘gau vigyan’ to be held on February 25 in a bid to generate interest among students and general public about the native breed of cow and its benefits. Following this, on February 12, UGC Secretary Rajnish Jain sent the circular to the vice-chancellors of all the universities.

“Study materials for the exam have been prepared in various Indian languages including Malayalam. There is a long list of blunders in this, which does not have any logic and scientific backing,” Kerala Sasthra Sahithya Parishad said in a statement, also urging UGC to withdraw the circular.

"The website contains claims that there are traces of gold in the milk of indigenous cows due to which its milk has a light yellowish tint. It also says the cow's milk protects humans from nuclear radiations and many more," the parishad said.

It also claims that thousands of people escaped the Bhopal Gas tragedy, as their houses were paved with cow dung. “In both India and Russia, even today cow dung is used in nuclear reactor centres to prevent radiation,” states another claim without any scientific backing. In another claim without any scientific backing, it states that cow urine has power to cure leprosy and psoriasis.

The parishad pointed out that the Article 51A (h) of the Constitution of India says it shall be the duty of every citizen to develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform.

"It's a disgrace that a government agency in a country with a Constitution, which emphasizes scientific awareness, was associating in spreading superstitious propaganda," the organisation said. This will embarrass Indian universities and the education system before the world, Kerala Sastra Sahitya Parishad added.

Meanwhile, the Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog's official website on Sunday showed that the exam which was supposed to be held in February, has been postponed.

(With inputs from PTI)

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