Cow Population Increased 18% In The Last 7 Seven Years: Livestock Census 2019
The livestock census is conducted across the country by the Department of Animal Husbandry & Dairying under Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying.
Population of cows in the country has gone up 18 per cent from 12.3 crore in 2012 to 14.4 crore in 2019. On the other hand, population of male cattle (bulls) witnessed a decline of over 30 per cent during the same time from about 6.8 crore to 4.74 crore, the latest Livestock Census has revealed.
Coupled together, the overall cattle population in India increased only marginally (0.8%) to 19.25 crore compared to the previous census, which estimated the number at 19.09 crore in 2012.
The livestock census is conducted across the country by the Department of Animal Husbandry & Dairying under Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry & Dairying. It has been carried out periodically since 1919, making the latest census its 20th edition and usually takes the head count of all domesticated animals.
The 20th Livestock Census was launched in October, 2018 and was carried out in about 6.6 lakh villages and 89 thousand urban wards across the country covering more than 27 crore of Households and Non-Households. This was also the first time that livestock data was collected online during the Census.
According to the latest data, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, which had the highest cattle population in the previous census of 2012, have seen a small decline in numbers while being completely overtaken by West Bengal.
So, while UP and MP had a cattle population of 1.96 crore each in 2012, the same has fallen to 1.88 crore (-3.93%) and 1.87 crore (-4.42%), respectively. At the same time, cattle population in West Bengal saw a sharp increase of over 15 per cent from 1.65 crore in 2012 to 1.9 crore in 2019.
Maharashtra and Odisha are only other states which recorded a decline in cattle population which saw an increase in states such as Bihar, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Assam and Chhattisgarh.
Moreover, population of exotic/crossbred (foreign) cattle saw a growth of almost 27 per cent from 3.97 crore to 5.04 crore over the last seven years, even as the population of indigenous/non-descript cattle dipped 6 per cent from 15.1 crore to 14.2 crore.
Within these, the population of milch exotic/crossbred cattle went from 1.94 crore to 2.56 crore with a substantial growth of over 32 per cent, while the same for indigenous cattle remained nearly unchanged.
Incidentally, the government had launched the Rashtriya Gokul Mission in 2014 for “conservation and development of indigenous breeds in a focused and scientific manner” with a total outlay of Rs 500 crore for the first three years.
Overall, livestock population increased 4.6 per cent to 53.57 crore with cattle accounting for 36 per cent of it.
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