New Delhi: Switzerland is all set to vote on an issue of national importance – whether to subsidise farmers who let their cows’ and goats’ horns grow naturally.

Millions of Swiss voters will cast their ballots on Sunday on whether farmers who do not dehorn their cows and goats should be granted subsidies to cover the additional associated costs.

The referendum on ‘preserving the dignity of livestock’ was initiated by Armin Capaul, a 66-year-old farmer and a self-proclaimed rebel.

"We must respect cows as they are. Leave them their horns. When you look at them they always hold their head high and are proud. When you remove the horns, they are sad,” Capaul was quoted as saying by Reuters.

Swiss cows are a national symbol and tourist attraction. Almost three-quarters of them are genetically hornless or are dehorned.

"In Switzerland, cows have never been talked about as much as now," said Capaul.

Swiss economy minister Johann Schneider-Ammann said, “In Switzerland, it's usual for issues to be brought to the people for a vote - every important question or less important question”.

However, some farmers are opposed to this, saying that if cows have horns, the danger of injuries to the animals and humans is greater.