Siblings save cattle from abattoir, take the goshala route
Tamil Nadu, May 18: While the elder brother rescues cows from butchers, the younger one takes care of them by selling vibhuti (the holy ash made from cow dung). Meet the two siblings–V Natesan and his younger brother Krishnan-who have been rescuing cattle from several parts of Tamil Nadu since 1980 and giving them shelter under “Govardhan“, a registered charitable trust that runs 35 goshalas (shelter for cows) across the state.
A staunch follower of the Kanchi shankaracharya, Natesan has so far rescued more than 4,000 cows and oxen. Krishnan on the other hand takes care of the cattle and makes vibhuti out of cow dung.Half the money from the sale of vibhuti is used to run the goshalas. The specially made vibhuti has been used in famous temples like Sabarimala and Kedarnath.
With at least 50,000 non-productive cows and oxen being transported to Kerala for slaughter every month, Natesan founded Govardhan in 1997 to put a stop to cattle slaughter.
But the rescue process had started much earlier in 1975. “I had rescued about 20 cows and oxen in my first attempt. I made a small shelter for them in Gummidipoondi. It was just a beginning and with the help of friends I could rescue many later,“ said Natesan, a retired bank employee who recently turned 70.