The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Cop-out over killer dogs

Twenty-four hours have passed since a youth was mauled to death by four dogs — a Rottweiler, a Doberman and two Labradors. But the police are yet to make a move to catch the culprits. And it’s apparently the fear of the bite that is keeping the cops at bay.

The owner of the factory in Barasat, North 24-Parganas, where Anup Ghosh, 25, was killed by the canines, is absconding, while careful plans are drawn up to snare the dogs and admit them in Beleghata’s Infectious Diseases Hospital. Police have sealed the main entrance to the factory, but no has dared step inside, where the four dogs are.

“If the dogs are found to be unmanageably violent and if the owner does not come forward to handle them, we may also think of putting them down,” said Bhuban Mondal, sub-divisional police officer, Barasat.

On Tuesday, Anup’s colleagues at a mineral water-bottling factory, watched in horror as the dogs pounced on him. They recounted how the Doberman and one of the Labradors were brought to the office complex for the first time and kept chained, while another Labrador and the Rottweiler were roaming free, like on any other day.

Suddenly, the Rottweiler — known for its ferocity and banned as a pet in a few countries — ran towards the crowd of onlookers, bit Anup on the ankle and brought him down. It then went for the jugular. As Anup screamed for help, the other dogs — two of them breaking free from their shackles — joined in the attack.

In a bid to rescue the youth, two drivers tried to chase the dogs away, but were also attacked. By the time Anup’s four assailants were finally forced to retreat into the factory, he was lying unconscious, bleeding profusely. Anup was rushed to Barasat district hospital, where his condition deteriorated steadily. He was then shifted to Nilratan Sircar Medical College and Hospital, where he died.

Well into Wednesday, tension ran high in the locality, as Anup’s colleagues blamed “negligence on part of the management” for the grisly incident. “In the first place, those ferocious dogs should not have been allowed to roam free,” said Ajay Das, adding that even after Anup had been attacked, no one from the management came forward to help. “As soon as Anup died, the two persons representing the management slipped away from the hospital,” another colleague alleged.

Harikrishna Diwedi, district magistrate of North 24-Parganas, sent two of his staff to Anup’s house in Birati on Wednesday to meet the bereaved family and offer financial assistance. Anup was the only earning member of the family. The local unit of the Congress set up a roadblock at the Birati Road-Jessore Road crossing on Wednesday, demanding Rs 5-lakh compensation for Anup’s family.

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