A senior minister in Haryana, who is from the BJP, has demanded that the cow be declared as the national animal, replacing the tiger.
A tweet from Haryana Health and Sports Minister Anil Vij on Wednesday read, “Declare Cow as National Animal of India instead of Royal Bengal tiger.”
Declare Cow as National Animal of India instead of Royal Bengal tiger
— ANIL VIJ MINISTER HARYANA (@anilvijminister) October 7, 2015
The minister’s tweet has come in the middle of a raging controversy over cow slaughter, beef ban in various states and the killing of a Muslim man in Dadri area of western Uttar Pradesh last week over rumours that he had eaten beef.
Vij is a senior minister in the first Bharatiya Janata Party government in Haryana, which came to power in October last year after assembly polls.
In March this year, the BJP government announced a complete ban on sale of beef in any form in the state. The decision upset many people living in Gurgaon, adjoining the national capital, especially a large number of foreign nationals living in the industrial hub, as beef eating has become illegal in the state.
A veteran and well-known BJP leader who represents the Ambala assembly constituency, Vij was one of the top contenders for the chief minister’s post in October last year when the BJP came to power on its own in Haryana for the first time.