'The cow is our mother' – India's beef boom at odds with Hindu tradition
April 19th, 2012
10:30 AM ET
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When 33-year-old Ashoo Mongia visits the supermarket it's rarely for stocking up his fridge for the week. As head of a cow protection enforcement team, he regularly scours Delhi grocery stores and outdoor markets for food products containing cow beef.

For the last 15 years, Mongia and his team of 120 Delhi-based volunteers have thrown themselves in a battle that pits India's billon-dollar meat industry and growing underground beef trade against Hindu traditionalists keen on preserving the holy status of cows.

"The cow is our mother, it's our duty to protect her," said Mongia, who monitors and raids hundreds of stores, butcher shops and slaughterhouses suspected of carrying, selling or slaughtering India's blessed bovines. "We do this because we believe in what the cow represents in our country, our culture and in the Hindu religion."

Read - Growing beef trade hits India's sacred cow

Previously - Clarified: Religious dietary restrictions and Restaurant serves meat to Hindus, served lawsuit in return

soundoff (32 Responses)
  1. structured settlement brokers

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    May 2, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
  2. BD

    It is my personal belief that one of the greatest crime a person, religion, or society can commit is imposing their morals on others in situations where the actions of the other party does not directly affect them.

    April 25, 2012 at 10:43 am |
    • MaCh

      I don't quite understand what you mean... but who is imposing their morals? There was a public 'beef-eating festival' at University in India the other day. Knowing fully well that people would not like that, who would you say is imposing their morals on others?

      April 29, 2012 at 9:03 pm |
  3. morgan

    I not only find negative comment hurtful, it lets me know that the war isn't over. I only imagine how many people love Obama and what he represents for our image in those countries. The little farmer in the mid west doesn't care if you have forty acres in Montana or if I live on a homestead in Alaska. Because we respect each other, but when our secrete service members give us a black eye or our government makes a bad law, it looks bad all over the world. I'm trying to say that the little people of India love their cow as a spiritual thing..who are they harming but maybe themselves if they are hungry. I won't eat my pets, not even in the worst of times and I won't be the one who brings this nation down. A few bad polititions make any country bad.. give the impression that "all" the people are like the country they represent. And those common farmers over there will never pack a bomb over here and hurt us. Crooked governments work off of peoples need for money and a better life so if their government recruite's them to harm another country/person, its because they are fed lies. Some times I wish that every one... everyone in power in any country in the world who causes harm because of "their agenda" would suffer what ever they try to put on some one else. Lots of people all over the world dress and drive and live in homes that would equal another small countries economy. Sure they are only postage stamp size countries but the people are not the problem, it's the leaders..Stalin Hitler Bush's Rothschilds, Mou Sa tung or how ever you spell it, was gloom for their people. Yeah, I'm just ranting and live in a imaginary world. For me thats ok cause I don't force it on anyone else. Yes I'm former military, drafted into a war that scared the sh*& out of me but I did what I was told. I fallowed orders, because weather i liked it or not, I could have cost the lives of my fellow service men. No this is not the place for this rant.. just long winded about another person's rights to follow his belief in his God. That includes atheists as well. Respect.. give it or you don't deserve it.

    April 22, 2012 at 12:44 am |
  4. Josh

    It's like if someone in the USA started selling horse or dog meat. We would be outraged, but others would find our anger hilarious.

    April 20, 2012 at 2:19 pm |
  5. KP

    It is faith people.
    When you recognize 'Halal' and 'Koher' and respect the sentiments of Muslims and Jews, why not give same respect for Hindu beliefs.

    April 20, 2012 at 2:10 am |
    • Sathyavrath

      Since when do you think the sane world respects Muslim or Jew for eating "Halal" of "Kosher" beef. In fact both these religious groups propose cruel forms or animal slaughter. If you must know France and Belgium want to ban this type of practice and move to humane forms of slaughter. The important thing is that we don't expect Muslims and Jews imposing their beliefs on the rest of the world and demand the rest of the world to eat "halal" or "kosher". What the Hindus are doing is imposing their beliefs on beef eaters and denying them the right to eat what they want and how they want it. That is fascism.

      April 21, 2012 at 3:01 pm |
      • Mahesh

        If you want to eat beef... go ahead and do it in the privacy of your home or another country. Don't bring slaughter houses in my country. Don't impose your diet on me. Don't spread your cruelty to animals rhetoric around. Stop whining and eat other things.

        April 29, 2012 at 8:57 pm |
        • Mahesh

          and by other things I mean non-meat. Our faith is against using himsa (violence) against living creatures. Yes, there was beef-eating in Vedic times. So? There was infidelity and polygamy too – that makes Hinduism pro-polygamy? Flawed reasoning abound.

          April 29, 2012 at 8:58 pm |
  6. Things that make you go "hmm"

    read this

    April 19, 2012 at 7:02 pm |
  7. RichardHead

    How " udderly " Stooooopid.

    April 19, 2012 at 5:25 pm |
    • casual_surfer

      I continue to be amazed by people wanting to promote cow eating where there are perfectly healthy alternatives... you like, you eat, someone doesn't, shut up and move on... I hear dogs are quite a delicacy in several places around world – so, let's start off a campaign to start eating dog meat instead wasting money on doggy day cares...

      April 19, 2012 at 5:52 pm |
    • Mahesh

      you are dumber than the cows.

      April 29, 2012 at 8:59 pm |
  8. krm1007

    Save the cows but fire missiles that kill people????? Does it make sense?

    April 19, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
    • casual_surfer

      Why doesn't make that sense? Missiles to keep the bad guys quiet... it is consistent with not wanting to kill cows...

      April 19, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  9. mickey1313

    Thiests are stupid. Millions starve in India, but these bafoons are mad that cows (a man made species) are being slaughtered for food. Shame on the hindu people

    April 19, 2012 at 4:19 pm |
    • Jdizzle McHammerpants ♫♫

      Cows are man made? Holy $h!t. I learned something new today. What about gazelles?

      April 19, 2012 at 4:55 pm |
    • casual_surfer

      you do sound very ignorant... cows provide livelihood to millions of people in India. If you go on killing them, there will be lot more who go hungry... you wouldn't want to kill a "golden goose" do you?

      April 19, 2012 at 5:29 pm |
    • Mahesh

      Atheists are stupid. You are a classic case.

      April 29, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
  10. krm1007

    Is a cow better than a pig/chicken/lamb/camel/goat/buffalo/bull/duck/.....go figure!!!!

    April 19, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
  11. casual_surfer

    What is different about cloned cows? Are they are NOT cows?

    April 19, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
    • Such a Clone

      Sure. The difference is they have that fuzzy red hair, wear white pancake make-up and over-sized shoes – plus their big red nose honks when you squeeze it.

      April 19, 2012 at 1:15 pm |
      • casual_surfer

        haha – this sure sounds like a cheap ho..er...

        April 19, 2012 at 1:21 pm |
  12. krm1007

    You know what...nothing like a TBone at Peter Luger Steakhouse.

    April 19, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
  13. rob

    What about Cloned Cows ? is it still HOLY ?

    April 19, 2012 at 11:42 am |
    • krm1007

      Cloned cows can be filet mignoned for hindus....I suppose.

      April 19, 2012 at 1:07 pm |
      • casual_surfer

        and why would you say such a hurtful thing?

        April 19, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
      • mickey1313

        No, meat is a no no to the Hindu.

        April 19, 2012 at 4:22 pm |
        • Sathyavrath

          Not eating meat is a recent concept in India. In Pre Bhuddist and Pre Jain times, Hindus , especially the Rishis and Bhramins polished off a cow whenever they had a chance. This is Vedic times. Read Swamy Vivekananda's talk in this. This non eating of beef is just a fascist imposition by modern day Hindu rightwingers.

          April 22, 2012 at 8:10 am |
  14. casual_surfer

    That is the meaning of "Holy Cow"!

    April 19, 2012 at 10:57 am |
  15. The Witty One

    This gives a whole new meaning to the phrase, "Holy Cow!"

    April 19, 2012 at 10:46 am |
    • Robin

      Holy Bovine, Batman!

      April 19, 2012 at 1:03 pm |
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