Siddipet: In a first of its kind initiative in the State, Siddipet district administration has constructed a hostel for buffaloes at Ponnala village with all facilities, including drinking water, rest rooms for herders, veterinary staff and milk collection point. The animal hostel concept is the brainchild of Finance Minister T Harish Rao, who is known for his out of the box thinking. The Minister will inaugurate it formally on Friday.
The bovine hostel, constructed in association with Bala Vikasa, NGO, will have multiple sheds with a capacity to house 160 buffaloes, and is a fallout of the establishment of sheep hostels in six villages last year in the district that have yielded the desired results.
These hostels for domestic animals are being established to meet multiple goals, the primary goal being providing proper sheds for buffaloes with all the facilities. With the livestock moving out of villages, the surroundings of the human habitation will be clean and mosquito-free. Veterinary doctors will also make regular visits to these hostels to ensure the well-being of the livestock.
Over Rs 2 crore funds under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MGNREGA) were granted to take up the project. About 60 milch buffaloes were moved to the hostel on Thursday. The remaining buffaloes from the village that were given to farmers under subsidy scheme will be moved to the hostel in a couple of days.
Harish Rao, after the inauguration, will have an interaction with the farmers in the presence of veterinary doctors and animal husbandry officials to sensitise them on the need to keep their buffaloes in the hostel. To encourage the farmers to take up the cattle-rearing to increase milk production besides creating additional income for farmers’ families, the district administration has granted funds to 32 farmers to buy 64 cattle recently utilising the funds available under Srinidhi Corporation and SC Corporation.
The district officials have also constituted Gopalamitra Milk Producers Organisation of Ponnala with 20 SHG women as members. Machinery to milk buffaloes, cut the grass, make buffalo dung cakes and for milk storage have been procured. A water tank, water containers and drainage system have also been incorporate at the hostel.
Village Sarpanch Renuka said the residents visited sheep hostels elsewhere before taking up the proposal for buffalo hostel. “We are proud of having the first of this kind of facility in Telangana,” she said.
Meanwhile, officials have released funds to build such hostels at Irkode, Ibrahimpur, Jakkapur, Gurralagondi, Gatla Malyala and Narmeta villages in Siddipet Assembly constituency.
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