Lucknow: The Uttar Pradesh government has given financial approval to release the first instalment of funds required for the upkeep of stray cattle during the current fiscal.

According to the officials, the government on Sunday evening issued a GO (government order) granting the financial approval with the condition that the funds would be utilised specifically for the maintenance of stray cattle and in strict compliance with the Election Commission’s model code of conduct.

“The government through the GO has approved an amount of Rs 16, 66, 64 lakh (166.66 crore) for spending on building cow conservation centres and arranging feed for stray cattle, ” the official said.

“This amount is the first instalment of the funds the provision of which was already made in the budget for the year 2024-25, ” he added.

There are around 15 lakh stray cattle housed in over 7, 000 cow conservation centres across the state. The government spends Rs 50 per animal per day on feed only.

“The government is making all efforts to keep stray cattle menace under check to avoid these animals becoming an issue in the poll season, ” another official said.

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