Various animal rights activists, including individuals and social organisations, on Tuesday protested against dog-catching activities by Tata Steel Utilities and Infrastructure Services Ltd (erstwhile Jusco).
Members of the organisations alleged that the company’s vendors abuse the dogs while taking them for sterilisation. After the process is done, the vendors don’t drop them in the same locality putting the canines at risk, they added.
On Tuesday, an animal control van, which picked up strays from Sonari, was chased down by a few local animal rights activists, who managed to stop the vehicle near the Tata Main Hospital (TMH) about four km from the original spot. The animal rights activists demanded release of all the five canines at the same location from where they were picked up.
Animal rights activist with the canines in Bistupur on Tuesday. Bhola Prasad
After the canines are picked up, they are taken to the Baridih-based dog sterilisation centre where they are neutered and kept in for a couple of days before their release.
“This has been happening for ages. We aren’t against sterilisation but they never release the dogs at the location they pick them from. Dogs have their territory, which they are used to, but leaving them somewhere else means attack by other dogs and abuse from unknown people as well as lack of access to food and water. People have already complained to the Tata Steel Utilities and Infrastructure Services Ltd but in vain. On Tuesday, we somehow managed to get hold of the vehicle,” said Aniz Patel of Jamshedpur Red Paws Rescue.
Under the Animal Birth Control (Dogs) Rules, 2001, street dogs are to be sterilised, vaccinated and subsequently released into the same area from where they are captured. These rules also require sick dogs to be treated prior to their sterilisation and vaccination but animal lovers allege it is never followed.
Another young activist Ayon Das said, “The driver avoided us but we kept chasing the vehicle all the way to TMH. They also caught a lactating female dog. Sterilisation of a lactating dog isn’t possible. First, these drivers and catchers need to be trained as per the rules. After much argument, Suresh Prasad, the person concerned, agreed to contact us when these canines are brought back.”
Voluntary organisations in Jamshedpur have also been demanding a dog shelter but neither any corporate house nor the East Singhbhum district administration has so far heeded to their demands.
Spokesperson of Tata Steel Utilities and Infrastructure Services Ltd Sukanya Das said, “We follow all the Animal Birth Control rules. Sometimes the vendors drop the dogs a few feet away, sensing danger to children or senior citizens, but the location is always the same.”