Gau Nandi Sewa – a unique shelter-cum-hospital for cows and bulls in Noida

The Hindu Shastras give great importance to Gau Sewa (protection and taking care of cattle). Taking care of Gau and Nandi (Cows and Bulls) earns great merit. In keeping with the spirit of the Shastras, two young men from Noida Kapil and Arjun started the Gau Nandi Sewa (GNS) in the year 2018.

The Gau Nandi Seva is a hospital-cum-shelter home mainly for the bulls, although they have taken in a few cows as well. It is the brainchild of Kapil who was joined by his friend Arjun in serving Nandis and Gaus in February 2018.

What led to starting Gau Nandi Sewa?

The entire service began in January 2018 as a feeding exercise when one evening Kapil was returning with his mother who stopped to feed a baby Nandi bull. Kapil comes from a devout Hindu family and it was customary for his mother to feed Rotis (flat wheat bread) to cows and bulls. Therefore, it wasn’t surprising that his mother stopped by to feed the baby bull.

According to Kapil’s statement to Hindupost, despite being by his mother’s side while she fed the cattle right from his childhood, it was not until the bull that was later named Orange came into Kapil’s life that he got interested in serving them.

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Orange – the bull that inspired setting up of GNS

One evening while returning home his mother insisted to stop by and feed a little bull they found on the roadside. Kapil was so taken in by the sight of the bull that he insisted they go for a stroll and feed the cows and bulls the next evening as well.

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It was the sight of cows and bulls consuming smelly rotten food from a garbage dump a few meters away that tugged at Kapil’s heart-strings who was saddened by the fact that the Nandi bull which is considered sacred in Hindu Dharma was been neglected by the populace and left to feed on rotten food.

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Garbage dump that doubled up as feeding ground for cows and bulls

This experience changed Kapil and set the ball rolling for his journey to serve bulls and cows. Initially, they were only feeding a few bulls and cows, however, slowly the numbers increased.

As the mouths to feed increased, so did the quantity of fresh veggies Kapil had to purchase. However, the thought of serving cattle that is so revered in Hindu Dharma yet neglected by the populace who allow it to feed on plastics and garbage, kept him going.

Sewa Hospital

Slowly, Kapil became friends with the herd and could soon identify each individual. His friendship with a full-grown bull, who he named Shahenshah (emperor), and subsequent experience with the SPCA (Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) finally, led to the formation of Gau Nandi Seva Hospital.

Shahenshah was a fully grown bull who became good friends with Kapil, so much so that he would respond to Kapil calling out his name too. One night on his usual feeding rounds, he learned that Shahenshah had been attacked. He saw the bull bleeding but was assured by the locals that this was a minor wound that would heal itself.

Over the next two days, Kapil couldn’t find the bull anywhere. On the third day of his search mission, Kapil was informed that the bull had been taken away to SPCA Noida Sector 94 as he had become very sick.

On reaching the so-called SPCA Hospital, he saw a sick Shahenshah lying in a pitiable condition. The doctor informed him that the bull was critical and had suffered a severe bout of food poisoning. In the next 15 minutes, the bull died right in front of Kapil.

SPCA would not even give Kapil space to bury the bull in their premises. Short of funds, Kapil was forced to abandon the body which was subsequently sent to a factory. So much for animal welfare that organizations like SPCA and PETA keep peddling and enriching themselves by way of donations!

This experience changed Kapil forever who swore to get injured cows and bulls treated by himself and never send them to SPCA. That’s how he ended up saving baby bull Maltu who had injured his foot. Days turned to weeks, yet Kapil employed the services of a Vet to treat the bull rather than sending him to SPCA.

The second case that got sent to SPCA Noida was that of a bull named J who had sustained severe injuries after being attacked with a sharp blade. Kapil brought him home from SPCA and began his treatment along with that of Maltu.

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Soon they were not just feeding stray cattle but taking in injured cows and bulls, often attacked and tending to their injuries and other health issues. Kapil says he received permission from UP government officials as his work is in keeping with the vision of UP CM Yogi Adityanath who believes in cattle protection and is himself an animal lover.

The main motivation to run the hospital, however, stemmed from the fact that Kapil was absolutely certain that he would never send another cow or bull to SPCA ever again if he could help it and get them treated under his own supervision.

Glimpses of some of the cases taken up by Sewa

Sewa team

Running a shelter-cum-hospital is no mean feat and requires as many hands-on the deck as possible, especially since GNS is on 24/7 rescue call duty attending to injured bulls and cows. To date, they have saved more than 100 cows and bulls from Noida, Greater Noida, and Delhi.

They have received permission to set up temporary shed for cows and bulls in a barren dumping ground where they have around 30 bulls and a lone cow. The exercise began as a mere feeding one with Kapil and his mom. In February 2018, Kapil’s childhood friend Arjun joined him in rescuing and serving the cattle.

Besides the three of them working full time, GNS has employed the services of four people (3 in the daytime and 1 at night) to take care of the “kids” as Kapil says.    They specifically work with the Kamdhenu ambulance of Shri Naresh Sharma in Noida. Kamdhenu Ambulance offers free service to help injured and/or sick gaus and nandis baba. All the rescue operations till date have been carried out with the help of Kamdhenu Ambulance.

A few friends have also chipped in during these pandemic times. Bittu helps the team in rescue and treatment. Government liaisoning is done by their lawyer friend Shailendra Singh with whose help they have been successful in acquiring temporary land for their shelter-cum-hospital.

They have also hired a full-time Vet for treatment at the hospital. Besides, they make home calls on injured cows and bulls, at times 3-4 visits per case, but these home calls save them cost and space, two resources they are short of at present.

Funds for Sewa

On average, GNS spends around 5000 rupees per month on each. Besides putting in money from their pockets, they also crowdfund through social media. However, it is not an easy business to sustain 110 cattle (including bulls, cows, and calves) and pay the staff.

In Kapil’s words “I started Gau Nandi Sewa to inspire people to love and care for Nandi baba & gaumata, specifically Nandi baba as the whole country already loves and respects gaumata but no one cares or even looks at nandi baba. We don’t do seva here; we love them and hence are doing everything to keep them happy and safe just like everyone does for their kids and loved ones”.

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GNS shelter

An appeal

As a society, it is our responsibility to help out organizations like GNS which are doing yeomen service in serving cattle which Hindu Shastras exalt. We at Hindupost appeal our leaders to help out these young men working for a cause with enthusiasm without any expectation of monetary reward.

Those wishing to donate and help out these young folks can do so using one of the following methods.

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About the Author

Maitri
A opinionated girl-next-door with an attitude. I'm certainly not afraid to call myself 'a proud Hindu' and am positively politically incorrect. A Bharatiya at heart who loves reading, music, sports and nature. Travelling and writing are my passions.