Cow Hugging Day in India scheduled to take place on February 14 canceled

Cow Hugging Day in India, announced for February 14 by a government body to replace Valentine’s Day in defense of Indian culture, was canceled on Friday. after unleashing angry reactions against and in favor.

"As ordered by the competent authority of the Ministry of Fisheries, Livestock and Dairy, the call of the Animal Welfare Council of India to celebrate Hug a Cow Day on 14 February 2023 is withdrawn"the agency said in a statement, without indicating the reasons for the suspension.

The council called this week to celebrate the day as a substitute for Valentine’s Day to encourage Indians to "do not forget" his "culture"after warning that the Vedic traditions of India are found "on the verge of extinction due to the progress of western culture".

Cows, considered sacred by Hinduism, are the "spine" of Indian culture and embracing bovines would bring immense benefitsmanaging to increase the "individual and collective happiness"said the Animal Welfare Council of India.

The deputy secretary of this body founded in 1962, Prachi Jain, told EFE last Wednesday that the event had the approval of the ministry.

Before being officially retired, Cow Hugging Day sparked a wave of conflicting opinions from social networks to Parliament, from the ridicule of the initiative to its defense.

The proposal is not particularly novel and resembles ideas such as the "koe knuffelen" in the Netherlands, a concept that involves melting into a hug with bovines and that preaches the mental health benefits of stroking and brushing cows.

But, in IndiaValentine’s Day has been the target of attacks and boycotts from the Hindu extreme right and religious groups, who regard him as a foreigner and have come to form "moral brigades" to prevent young lovers from celebrating the date.

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These episodes, however, have decreased in recent years, in parallel with its growing popularity in the cities of the conservative Asian country.


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