Get involved in YOUR city and locality - Improve Your World
Get involved in YOUR city and locality - Improve Your World
Get involved in YOUR city and locality 
Improve Your World Home | About Us | Sitemap | Search | Contact Us 

  Home >> Animal Issues - Stray Dogs >> observations on the High Court order pertaining to Stray Dogs

Observations on the High Court order pertaining to Stray Dogs

Below are my observations and thoughts (clause by clause) as I read the High Court Order of 1998 pertaining to Stray Dogs.
I would be very much interested in knowing your views. Thanks. Vinay
At the outset, I would like to state that I am not in favour of killing animals. I do, however, believe that vicious dogs need to be dealt with e.g. maybe by shifting them to some other location after due treatment.
1. The order seems to be more like a 'consent decree' rather than a 'judgement'. It appears that an Animal Welfare Org (AWO) filed a petition against BMC against the killing of dogs. The AWOs then gave a set of guidelines. BMC was happy to accept that as it greatly reduced their responsibilities. The Court was happy to accept it as the two opposing parties had agreed amongst themselves. It is not clear who are respondents 2 to 5. It is strange that non-AWO Citizen Groups were not included.
2 I. What are the AWBI guidelines? Can someone please email them or give a website link?
2 II. One objective that is missing is to deal with vicious dogs. That is a continuing short-sightedness of AWOs. Or are they stating that dogs are only vicious if unsterilised?
2 III a. What are the Municipal / State Laws pertaining to pet dogs? Can someone please email them or give a website link?
2 III b. It is to be noted that active participation of other AWOs and private individuals is sought and that adequate financial and infrastructural support of MCGM will be provided.
2 IV. Can someone pl email me the names of the contact persons along with their phone numbers and email ids and website details, if any, of all the 14 members of the Monitoring Committee? It seems strange that such a list is not available anywhere on the internet.
2 V b. It seems difficult to expect only one veterinarian to decide which dogs need to be put to sleep for the large dog population that Mumbai has.
2 V a, c, d, e. How does one obtain what the Committee has recommended / done on these issues?
2 VI. a. How many dog vans is MCGM providing?
2 VI. e. It seems strange that only one ambulance-cum-clinical van is needed.
2 VI. g. What is the amount being given to NGOs for each sterilisation / immunisation?
2 VII 1) a. Which is this Cell where citizens have to lodge their complaints?
2 VII 1) b) a). Where is the register of complaints kept? What are the statistics?
2 VII 1) b) b). What is the time-table for covering the city zone-wise? What has been the actual performance? Why?
2 VII 2) 3). Where is the register of dogs captured? What are the statistics?
2 VII 2) 5). Are public announcements made during dog capture? Are residents being educated? How is their support being sought?
2 VII 2) 6) - 10). Are these being done to the satisfaction of the Monitoring Committee and AWOs?
2 VIII. Can just 5 NGOs really expect to sterilise all the dogs in the city faster than they breed? It seems difficult to fathom such a recommendation being made and being accepted. Why is there no provision for capacity creation amongst NGOs or even commercial orgs or BMC? Even more strange is that BMC does not have to do sterilisation. 
2 XIII 2. Are quarterly progress reports being published in newspapers? What are the statistics?
2. XIII 3. Why a Public Awareness / Education Campaign was / is not planned / incorporated in these guidelines?
2 XIV. Have these guidelines been revised? Can someone give details? It is ironic that we had to get the copy of the order itself from Pune when all AWOs are members of the Karmayog Yahoo Group since long.
2. XV. What are the targets? What have been the difficulties in the implementation? Have these difficulties been resolved? If not, has the High Court been approached again? If not, why not?
I am quite disappointed by the Guidelines suggested by the AWOs and also by the functioning of the AWOs themselves. 
There is a clear mismatch between the capacity of AWOs and the size of both the city and its stray dog population.
The infrastructural facilities that are sought also seem quite inadequate.
There seems to be no desire to formally educate children or adults about the various aspects of stray dogs.
The entire operation seems to be shrouded in secrecy.
Consequently, the population of stray dogs is increasing, along with the nuisance of barking, and the menace of biting. Lay citizens naturally suggest removal or killing of stray dogs, and this puts AWOs on the defensive. Various viewpoints are not shared and discussed. AWOs often assume that a person is either an animal lover or an animal hater. While the reality is that a vast majority are either indifferent or want to behave as responsible citizens and responsible human beings caring for nature and the environment.
With that objective, it is time a new BMC - Civil Society Committee on Stray Dogs be set up.
If you are interested in being involved, please respond. Please also email your thoughts on the above or any other aspect of the High Court Order, etc.

It is one of the beautiful compensations of this life that no one can sincerely try to help another without helping himself. --Charles Dudley Warner