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The Cow is a sacred animal in the Hindu religion. Dairy products are extensively used in Hindu culture and are one of the most essential nutritional components of Hindu meals. Panchagavya, a mixture of five products of cow, milk, curd, butter, urine, and dung, is consumed in Brahmanical rituals. The mixture is also smeared on ulcers as a healing product. The goddess Lakshmi is thought to reside in cow dung.[2]

Veneration of the cow increased during medieval times when the rate of cow slaughter increased phenomenally. It is also believed that Muslim sacrifice of cows during Bakr-Id also led to an increase in cow veneration among Hindus.

more on cow protection:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cow_protection_movement

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