Centre’s moo shakes up cattle markets
Weekly cattle sales in Telangana during the off season have dropped from 500 to 300
The gazette notification issued last week by the Ministry of Environment for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules - 2017 has had an impact on the cattle markets. While the rules say the aim is to ‘protect the animals from cruelty’ and not to ‘regulate the existing trade in cattle for slaughter houses’, the effect, of course, is just the opposite.
The Kondamadugu cattle market, one of the biggest weekly cattle-fairs on the outskirts of the city, had sales of at least 500 cattle per week during the off season. But following the gazette notification, and news reports in the media, sales on Tuesday fell to 300.
Samala Laxma Reddy, an associate of the market contractor S. Ganesh Reddy, said that 50 per cent of cattle sold at the market were meant for slaughter and the other 50 per cent were used for agricultural purposes.
“The weekly cattle market has existed for decades. It used to observe sales of at least 1,500 cattle per week during the season and 1,000 during off season. Now, the sales have come down to 500 during off season and 750 during the season, which is from July to December,” he said.
Mr Reddy said that on Tuesday, slaughterers did not visit the market due to the recent gazette notification by the central government which stipulates pristine conditions for the welfare of cattle. “They made calls to us and enquired about the sales. When we asked the veterinary officials, they informed us that implementation of the new rules may take three months. That will be peak time for sales and we shall lose our business. This time the value of the tender was `52 lakh and we may lose it if the new rules come into existence,” he said.
Farmers from surrounding villages and mandals such as Mylaram, Bommala Ramaram, Chikati Mamidi, Gattugudem, Malyala, Modempally, Medipally, and Fakkirguda etc bring their cattle to Kondamadugu market.
Farmers from various parts of Nalgonda, Yadadri, Suryapet, Mahbubnagar, Gadwal and Rangareddy purchase the cattle. Buyers from the twin cities also buy cattle from this market.
Nakkirthi Hari Babu, a farmer from Janapally village, said that oxen, bulls and buffaloes were sold for between `5,000 and `20,000 per animal based on the weight of the animal. “The price of milk giving cattle is between `50,000 and `1.5 lakh each. Cows are rare in this market, Mr Reddy said.
Following the situation at the Kondamadugu market, farmers and organisers of other cattle markets like Rammannapet, Yadadri and Narsingi near Gandipet are expressing concern over the impact on their markets. Narsingi market is held every Friday. The Draft Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules, 2017 was notified on January 16, 2017 inviting objections and suggestions. The rules were finally notified on May 23, 2017.
A worker struggles to load an ox onto a vehicle. The animals bought from the cattle market in Kondamadugu are being taken to various slaughterhouses in the city.