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Amid Covid Menace Gujarat Sets Up Cow Research Centre To Promote Use of Milk, Urine, Dung

Uddhav Bhatia, a frontline worker, touches a cow after applying cow dung on his body during "cow dung therapy", believing it will boost his immunity to defend against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at the Shree Swaminarayan Gurukul Vishwavidya Pratishthanam Gaushala or cow shelter on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, India, May 9, 2021. Credits: Reuters.

Uddhav Bhatia, a frontline worker, touches a cow after applying cow dung on his body during "cow dung therapy", believing it will boost his immunity to defend against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) at the Shree Swaminarayan Gurukul Vishwavidya Pratishthanam Gaushala or cow shelter on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, India, May 9, 2021. Credits: Reuters.

Governor Acharya Devvrat virtually inaugurated the centre that has been established as a part of ongoing Kamdhenu Chair formed by Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog.

Gujarat Technological University (GTU) has set up a cow research centre (Gau Anusandhan Unit) in Ahmedabad with an aim to promote science-based research in the traditional use of cow milk, urine, and dung.

According to a report by The Indian Express, Governor Acharya Devvrat virtually inaugurated the centre that has been established as a part of ongoing Kamdhenu Chair formed by Rashtriya Kamdhenu Aayog.

Meanwhile, there has also been a spike in the popularity of cow dung and cow urine as a ‘cure’ for coronavirus, with no scientific proof to substantiate the claim, particularly in Gujarat.

Experts are raising alarm over the possibility of fungal infection due to the use of cow dung. Ahmedabad has been witnessing 10 to 12 new cases of black fungus daily and the administration has now set up a separate facility to treat these patients. According to doctors, people with diabetes are at a higher risk of this infection.

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Eminent doctor and member of Ahmedabad Medical Association, Dr. Vasant Patel says that usage videos of taking bath in cow dung and cow urine to promote the immune system are circulating on social media are misleading. There is a misconception that cow dung and cow urine can help cure coronavirus. On the contrary, people are inviting an infectious disease called Mucormycosis, says Patel. “Using face masks, hand sanitisers, and maintaining social distancing is the only way to prevent Covid-19," he says, appealing people not to fall for such dangerous quacks.

The government has released an evidence-based advisory for screening, diagnosis, and management of black fungus. Stating that it may turn fatal if not cared for, the government said mucormycosis is a fungal infection that mainly affects people who are medication that reduces their ability to fight environmental pathogens.

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first published:June 07, 2021, 10:02 IST