Uttam Pudasaini: A saviour of stray cattle

Uttam Pudasaini

If we stroll through the streets of various cities in Nepal, stray cattle are among the common sights. They are deprived of healthy food and shelter and are caught with diseases. They do not have a safe place to live. As they live in the street, they are either injured or die in a road accident.    

However, some benevolent people are working for the welfare of these stray cattle. One among them is Uttam Pudasainin who has built a shed for stray cattle near Kageshwori, Kathmandu. Pudasainin has been rescuing stray cattle for the last five years and has a team of volunteers who work for the cause. He also has an ambulance for animals.

“We give food, shelter, treatment and love to the rescued stray cattle,” says Pudasaini.   

All they need is love

He has been rescuing stray cattle out of love which has become his source of happiness. 

After spending 10 years in the USA, Pudasaini returned to Nepal and became involved in the Bagmati Cleaning Campaign. During the clean-up of the Bagmati River, he encountered the bodies of animals in the river.

“Every day, I would come across a few bodies of cattle,” says Pudasaini. “I used to bury them near the river.”

The bodies of cattle in the river made him question— why so many cattle were perishing?— He found 14 bodies of cattle in a single day.

He tried to find out if there was anyone to rescue stray cattle but could not find anyone. This situation propelled him to take the initiative to rescue stray cattle. 

While rescuing the abandoned cattle found in the Kathmandu Valley, he found that people keep heifer calves and leave bull calves. Similarly, they are also reluctant to keep old and sick cattle and leave them on the street. 

Those stray cattle struggle for food, and they are found eating plastic. The plastic causes disease in their stomach. 

Lately, according to Pudasaini, stray cattle are also being smuggled. 

“If the stray cattle were not rescued immediately, they would have vanished the next day. Most probably they are sold in butcher’s shops,” says Pudasaini. 

A few years back, someone called him saying, “A bull calf has been hit by a vehicle in Ranibari.”

Pudasaini and his team immediately reached the spot. Both the legs of the bull calf were broken. They put that calf in their vehicle. Again on the way, they saw a heifer calf dying on the street. It had cuts in her body. So they also kept that heifer calf in the vehicle. They did the treatment. Two years have passed since the incident and presently both of them are living healthy lives. They have named the heifer calf Sangarsha. 

Sangarsha has been feeding milk to the other rescued cattle. 

Similarly, they named the bull calf Bijuli. The story of Bijuli is also emotional. Bijuli was taken to a slaughterhouse, and it ran away from there. While running away from there it was injured. 

Someone informed Pudasaini about Bijuli. When his team reached to rescue him, he was bleeding extremely. They kept the calf in the animal ambulance and brought it to the shed for treatment. After a long time, it became normal. 

Bijuli is traumatised. Still, if any outsider goes near Bijuli, he gets scared and runs away. 

All-rounder Pudasaini

Uttam Pudasaini

Pudasaini himself cuts grass and prepares food for cattle. He also drives an animal ambulance and brings the rescued cattle to the shed if necessary. According to him, there are currently 178 cattle in the shed. 

Pudasaini says that people rear cattle out of greed to acquire agricultural subsidies. “They do not have any emotional attachment behind rearing cattle. If they stop getting benefits from the cattle, they leave them to the streets.” 

Pudasaini does not have any selfish desire behind rearing cattle. He is either spending his money or getting support from the volunteers.

Pudasaini says he never asks for money from anyone to rear the stray cattle.  

“Many people donate money on their birthdays, and some even donate on their children’s birthdays,” says Pudasaini, “We easily accept such support.”   

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Twanabasu is a correspondent at Onlinekhabar.

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