Every cow should get a Unique Identification Number for tracking, suggests Centre

A Unique Identification Number (UIN) for every cow and its progeny has been suggested by an expert panel to evolve a mechanism to stop trafficking of cattle across the Indo-Bangla border, the Centre today told the Supreme Court.

The Centre told the apex court that a Committee headed by the Joint Secretary of the Home Ministry has been formed, which has given out certain recommendations, the Indian Express reported.

The court was hearing a petition filed by the Akhil Bharat Krishi Goseva Sangh, alleging that there was rampant smuggling of cattle across the border to Bangladesh, which has led to depletion of cows in the country. "Will help reduce smuggling", the government said in the report.

Centre also recommends special care for cattle beyond age of milking. The animals which stop milking are mainly smuggled outside India. Funding of shelter homes should be done by the State Government. The existing shelter homes lacks adequate facilities, the report says. "The UID for cow and its progeny should be made mandatory across India", the Centre asserted.

The Committee recommended that each animal be tagged with proper records of identification details, including age, breed, sex, lactation, height, body, colour, horn type, tail switch and special marks.

Moreover, the recommendations made a reference to a Himachal Pradesh High Court order which directed the Centre to make a uniform legislation for cow protection across the country. The technician will then update the unique code in their online data base.

If the reports are to be believed, beginning this year almost one lack technicians are affixing 12digit tags in the ears of cattle. The yellow-coloured tag is fixed in the centre of the earlobe.

"The Union Agriculture Ministry has devised a tamper-proof identification of cattle using polyurethane tags with UIN".

The tamper-proof tag just weighs eight grams so that it doesn't cause any inconvenience to the animal and its cost is Rs 8 per piece. The move is part of the central government's plans of tagging and tracking cattle to ensure they get vaccines on time, which can improve their breeding and milk production, and double the industry's income by 2022.

  • Arturo Norris