Hyderabad: The Union minister for road transport and highways, Nitin Gadkari, launched 'Khadi Prakritik Paint', a first-of-its-kind paint made from cow dung, on 12 January. It has been developed by the Khadi and Village Industries Commission.

According to the commission, the paint is eco-friendly and non-toxic with anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. The cow dung paint is cost-effective and odorless and has been certified by the Bureau of Indian Standards.

The paint is available in two forms – distemper and plastic emulsion paint. The project was conceptualised by the chairman of KVIC in March 2020 and later developed by Kumarappa National Handmade Paper Institute, Jaipur, a KVIC unit.

The minister for fisheries, animal husbandry, and dairy, Giriraj Singh, minister of state for MSME Pratap Chandra Sarangi, and the chairman of KVIC, Vinai Kumar Saxena, were present at the launch.

Mr. Gadkari said the eco-friendly paint is part of an effort to improve rural economy and bring about reverse migration from cities to rural areas. Pointing out that the paint is priced at only Rs. 120 per litre for distemper and Rs. 225 per litre for emulsion, he said this is less than half the price charged by big paint companies. Stressing that the role of the government is only that of a facilitator, he said the paint will be marketed in all corners of the country.

According to Khadi and Village Industries Commission, the paint is free from heavy metals like lead, mercury, chromium, arsenic, cadmium, and others. It will boost local manufacturing industries and create sustainable local employment through technology transfer, it said, adding this technology will increase consumption of cow dung as a raw material for eco-friendly products and will generate additional revenue for farmers and gaushalas. Using cow dung will also clean the environment and prevent clogging of drains, it further said.

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