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Nima | Gelephu

A Tshethar Tshogpa volunteer from the dzongkhag handed over 53 cattle to the tshogpa on November 14. These cattle were some of more than 400 cattle rescued from Sarpang between March and June of this year.

The cattle were taken to Wangdue where volunteers from Baelangdra have agreed to take care of the cattle.

New volunteers from the dzongkhag represented the tshogpa while undertaking the ownership of the cattle last week.

Cattle rescued by the tshogpa became an issue in the dzongkhag after people from Sershong complained about the animals damaging crops in the gewog. A few cattle were even found dead at the drinking water source in the gewog.

The issue was also discussed in the dzongkhag tshogdu.

Local government leaders from Sarpang asked the concerned regulatory authority to monitor tshethar work to minimise the damage to communities and ensure the animals receive proper care after being rescued.

An official of Tshethar tshogpa, Aue Tshering, said that it is important to take the cattle to provide them with better care and avoid unnecessary damage in the dzongkhag.

He said that the cattle could not be taken from Sarpang right after they received complaints, as they had to first stop the Tshogpa’s regional coordinator from carrying out any kinds of tshethar work.

“We were able to take the cattle today with the help of the Thimphu court. There was also pressure from regulatory authorities and the people,” he said. “Earlier, the volunteer did not agree to hand the cattle over to us. He claimed that the association had a balance payment to make for the rescued animals.”

Aue Tshering said it was important to hand over the cattle first to reduce the impact on people by the tshethar work that is done with the support and trust from the people of the country.

He said that the volunteer continued to do rescues and opened another two bank accounts for tshethar work even after the ban. “I am sure there is a due investigation going on with that. Tshethar tshogpa deposited more than Nu 6.6M to his account to date but he has handed over only 50 heads of cattle so far.”

The association also spent more than Nu 54,000 trying to transport all of the rescued animals from Sarpang.

Meanwhile, volunteers who helped transport the rescued cattle to Wangdue said that there was proper care and good pastureland for the cattle in Wangdue. They also said there are adequate herders to take care of the cattle.

The former regional coordinator of the tshogpa, drungtsho Tshering Penjor, said more than 400 heads of cattle were rescued this year. “More than 130 died, more than 100 were handed over to the people willing to adopt the rescued animals as per the association’s standard practices.”

He also said that 53 heads of cattle were handed over to the tshogpa last week and the remaining 21 would be transferred this week. “I received more than Nu 6.1M to date to pay for the rescued animals.”

According to him, while working as regional coordinator from March to June this year, donations worth more than Nu 12 million were collected. “The rescues were mostly done here. There were many incidents of animals taken to slaughterhouses in the south. We have to pay over Nu 3.8M even today,” he said.

Tshering Penjore added that he wrote to the association twice to take the cattle from the dzongkhag after the dzongkhag, drungkhag, and gewogs did not allow him to continue rescues in June.

He claimed that there was no one to take care of the cattle and he had to use two bank accounts registered to his neighbours when asking for donations to treat the cattle and buy food for them. The accounts were later blocked.

Tshering Penjore said there were more than 40 heads of cattle donated for free that were all taken to Tamala in Jigmecholing. “However, the cattle returned to their owners.”

Edited by Tashi Dema

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