Jharsuguda : With only ten days left for Diwali, preparations to celebrate this year Diwali are underway everywhere in Jharsuguda district. However, this year celebrations will be a muted one due to the COVID19 pandemic. In this situation, an owner of cattle shelter, near Kandheikela Village under Lakhanpur has been promoting eco-friendly Diwali with his cow dung diyas made up of Cow Dung.

The proprietor of the Cow Shelter, Anand Sharma, who runs the Gopal Gir Goushala near Kandheikela Village has employed around 12 employees from a nearby village and aim to provide means of livelihood to as more local villagers especially women by making Diwali lamps out of Cow dung. His cow shelter has around 35 Cows at present.

” My cow shelter has spread at around 5 acres with around 35 cows. Initially, we use to use the cow dung as fertiliser only but when I saw a friend of mine based in Nagpur was making diya out of cow dung, I could not believed it and then I developed curiosity in my mind that how it can be done, I researched and even seeked help from Nagpur friend regarding this and got my unit for making this diyas. Initially, there was lots of question in mind like if this diyas can hold oil or not. whether it will be of good strength or not but when I got the diya making unit and tested my self, I got confidence, Then I employed local women of the village to produce this diyas. By doing this it helps in providing livelihood to the local villagers and even also creates an opportunity for the small local business shops to earn money through selling this product. We are now selling its Rs. 2 per pcs and have started marketing and hoping we would get a good response. ” said Anand Sharma, a native of Raigad Chattishgarh but having his cow shed at Kandheikela which is bordering Odisha and Chhatisgarh.

These cow dungs lamps and idols are widely accepted by the people. This is our attempt to produce an eco-friendly Diwali by using most common materials available nearby us. It is good for humans as well as for the environment. Our main motto is to promote keeping desi cow so that the caw dung is utilised as an organic fertiliser for producing an organic product which is healthy for people to eat, Sharma Added.

Khusbhu Sha, a worker working at this cowshed said that these lamps and idols are dried in the air instead of Sun because, on the sun, the diya usually develops cracks. After being completely dry in the air, they are painted with natural colours and moreover, these products won’t pollute our environment.