Cows and calves from the cattle shed (goshala) located near the famous Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram, were relocated to a private farm in Kuttichal by the city Corporation following a High Court order to shut down the goshala.
A High Court order dated October 28 had ordered the Thiruvananthapuram Corporation to take immediate action within two weeks of the judgement, as the condition of the cows in the goshala was pathetic.
The corporation shifted the cows to Vilappilsala. However, the locals there protested the move since they were concerned about their place of residence being turned into a dumping yard. Vilappilsala used to house the waste treatment plant of Thiruvananthapuram city until a few years ago, and it was shut down following a huge agitation from the people. Later, the cows were shifted to a private farm in Kuttichal.
TNM had earlier reported about the plight of the cows in the goshala as they were not given enough food by the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Goshala Trust, a private body. In July 2019, a calf died in the goshala, after which the locals took notice of the condition of the cowshed. They found that all the cows were malnourished. After that, an NGO called Paithruka Samrakshana Samithi (a heritage conservation committee) and a few locals provided feed to the cows.
"It would cost around Rs 2000 daily to feed them. We were struggling to continue it. Since nobody provided them food, we continued to feed them. The Corporation shifting them to a better place was a welcome move," advocate RS Vijay Mohan, Secretary of the Paithruka Samrakshana Samithi, said.
"Earlier, the cows were on the verge of death without food. They were not even provided enough water. Later, when we started giving food, they became healthy," he added.
Actor and BJP MP Suresh Gopi and a few other actors are members of the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Goshala Trust which owned the goshala previously.
The Corporation also submitted an affidavit in the HC, stating that the goshala functions in pathetic conditions. The shed was made of tarpaulin and more than 30 cows were forced to live in a small area.
The private trust established the goshala 10 years ago with the permission of the then head of the Travancore royal family, Uthradom Thirunal Marthanda Varma.
The goshala was started to provide good quality milk to the temple for its rituals. Currently, the temple has its own goshala.