Age of yogis and sadhvis

It is the age of yogis and sadhvis.

Many like jurist Fali Nariman may question the appointment of Yogi Adityanath as chief minister of India’s most populous state, asking whether it is the beginning of Hindu state, but there are many others who think the rabble-rousing brigade is the need of the hour.

The venom-spewing, aggressive campaigner Yogi, who up till now was considered a fringe element, managed to take centre stage.

Gau seva or service of cows is Yogi’s one of the most important routines of life. His cow shelter at Gorakhnath Temple has close to 460 cows and calves and he feeds them with milk, roti and jaggery. Some of his cows including his favourite Nandini, would be moving to Lucknow with him.

The Gorakhnath cow shed have the best breeds of cows including Gujarati, Sehwal, Desi, Gir, which produce over 100 litres of milk a day.

Yogi has also ordered a blanket ban on cattle smuggling and warned of zero tolerance in such cases.

On the same lines, Rajasthan is witnessing a rise of gau sevak in the form of sadhvi, who daily routine is saving cows from being smuggled.

Sadhvi Kamal didi, 39, has gained her two-minutes of fame following beating up of two workers of Hotel Hayat Rabbani last Sunday and getting their hotel sealed for allegedly serving beef.

Sadhvi’s act in Pratapgarh district last year of apprehending a truck with hundreds of her supporters, supposedly smuggling cows and getting truck driver arrested, did bring her into notice of being an able cow vigilante but was not enough to turn the limelight on her.

However, last Sunday’s attack and seize of the hotel Hayat Rabbani, has earned her the status she was perhaps yearning for so many years. Kamal didi has been serving cows since she was 16 years old. She has said that Yogi’s assuming the Chief Ministerial post of Uttar Pradesh and her finding suspicions of beef serving in the hotel, is perhaps prophetic.

Hailing from Haryana, her family migrated to Rajasthan when she was 12. But having protected cows for the past 12 years in Rajasthan and becoming the national president of the women’s wing of Rashtriya Gau Raksha Dal since three years, has not really made Kamla didi so famous as the incident last Sunday.

Now with the media hounding to get her views on gau seva and focusing on her activities, Kamal didi is no longer the anonymous gau sevak.

Interestingly, the police, which reluctantly filed the complaint by hotel owner Naeem Rabbani of assault and trespassing ion his property, does not name Kamal didi even as photographs and videograbs show her and her supporters manhandling hotel staff.

Social activists, who are pursuing the case, say the complaint names the attackers but does not name Kamal Didi as an accused, as if this was a blind criminal case. The intent of the police to do justice in this case is wanting. Activists called the FIR an eyewash.

Plus there have been no comments from the ruling party leaders on this issue. The hotel remain sealed till today and the owner perhaps running from place to place to get his business restarted.

So can the whole incident be termed as an indication of future things to come – that of the rise of another sadhvi in the garb of gau sevak in this desert state or in the run to take centre stage?

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