A dog-catcher in front of RIMS in Ranchi on Monday. Picture by Hardeep Singh
A stray dog ran amok on the premises of Rajendra Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) in Ranchi on Monday morning, attacking nine persons, including a doctor, and scaring away people.
All the injured had to be administered anti-rabies injection at RIMS.
Nawal Kishore Jha, professor and head of the surgery department, was the first to be mauled by the canine as he arrived for duty after 9.30am. Jha received scratches on his legs when the dog pounced on him.
But the sudden attack had little impact on the doctor’s sense of humour as he good-naturedly said: “I usually arrive at the hospital before 9.30am. Today, I reached around 15 minutes late. Probably no one would have punished me for turning up late, so the dog decided to remind me that I should always be on time.”
The eight other injured — Phulra Devi, Lalu Prasad, Ruby, R.R.P. Singh, Vinay Kumar, Tileshwar Tiwary, Rajesh Kumar and Shakil Ansari — are relatives of patients. They were either bitten or scratched by the dog while entering the emergency department between 10am and 11am.
Rajesh Kumar recalled the horror. “The dog had attacked me from behind and bit me. But I escaped with few injuries as onlookers intervened and shooed it away by pelting stones. I am afraid of crossing the emergency area now,” he said.
“We cannot say for sure whether the dog was mad or not. It disturbed us a number of times in the morning and attacked several people. It kept coming back though we tried to drive it away. Finally, we went after the dog with a stick and it did not come again,” said one of the guards.
The hospital sent an SOS to Ranchi Municipal Corporation (RMC).
“The RMC has been asked to send a team of dog-catchers and take away all the strays from around the hospital premises,” said dean S.N. Choudhary, who is now in-charge of RIMS as director Tulsi Mahto is on leave.
The civic body’s CEO Manoj Kumar confirmed to have received the news around 4pm and sending a squad of dog-catchers to the hospital.
“I have directed the team to ensure that all dogs in and around RIMS are caught. If this cannot be done today (Monday), we will carry out a drive over the next few days and clear the area of dogs,” he added.
On an average, around 25- 30 street dogs can be seen anytime around RIMS.
The dogs even sneak into the hospital corridors and feast on leftover of food items and kitchen remains.