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10 Points About the Face Behind Gau Bhakt Movement in Rajasthan

At age 12, she found a mentor in Acharya Yogendra Arya, president of the Haryana unit of the Rashtriya Gau Raksha Dal and a member of the state government’s Gau Sewa Aayog.

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Updated:April 5, 2017, 5:25 PM IST
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10 Points About the Face Behind Gau Bhakt Movement in Rajasthan
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New Delhi: As a Muslim man succumbed to his injuries after a brutal thrashing by cow vigilantes in Alwar district of Rajasthan, the focus has again shifted to self-styled cow protectors.

Earlier, in 2015, a man named Akhlaq was lynched in Uttar Pradesh's Dadri town for allegedly consuming and storing beef.

As the controversy rages on the issue, we take a look at Sadhvi Kamal Didi, who is spearheading the so-called cow protection campaign in Rajasthan.

1) Sadhvi Kamal Didi heads the women’s wing of Rashtriya Gau Raksha Dal in Rajasthan. She was born Kamlesh Sharma in Haryana’s Jhajjar district in 1977.

2) At age 12, she found a mentor in Acharya Yogendra Arya, president of the Haryana unit of the Rashtriya Gau Raksha Dal and a member of the state government’s Gau Sewa Aayog.

3) Kamlesh moved to Rajasthan with her parents and became Sadhvi Kamal at age 16.

4) She earned the title Didi, thanks to her over 20 years of cow activism in Rajasthan and Haryana.

5) Sadhvi Kamal Didi and her supporters blocked the national highway in Pratapgarh district in June 2016 to protest against the arrest of five of her followers for assaulting two ‘cow smugglers’ -a truck driver and his helper.

6) Kamal Did is associated with Rashtriya Gau Raksha Dal, a self-styled group that protects cows, operates in Rajasthan.

7) The cow vigilante group has its members in Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.

8) Satish Kumar, who was arrested in Vrindavan, Uttar Pradesh, in August 2016 on charges of criminal assault,
extortion, robbery and sodomy among others heads, Rashtriya Gau Raksha Dal.

9) Rajasthan is the first state in India to form a dedicated government department for cows – Gopalan.

10) Rashtriya Gau Raksha Dal draws its strength in Rajasthan with the support of its 7,500 members, of which 2,200 are women.

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