Express News Service
Despite additional work force being deployed and trained staff available round the clock and quantity of fodder required trippled,the municipal corporation is facing a tough time managing the large number of stray cattle that have been caught over the past few days.
The cattle pound at Industrial Area is teeming with cattle with 450 of them at present. The additional space that the MC has identified in Industrial Area for keeping the cattle is still being prepared. The civic body had started special drives to capture stray cattle last week after deaths of two city residents within a span of a few days.
Earlier,MC used to get 8 quintals of fodder to feed the cattle it had. This quantity has now been increased to 20 quintals. As many as 25 people have been hired in order to look after the cattle. A six-member team from the Animal Husbandry Department has also been deployed to provide treatment to the animals.
An official informed that three calves have been born in the cattle pound over the past two days and need special care. Around 100 litres of milk was collected at the pound Tuesday and distributed among different institutions free of cost.
However,councillor Arun Sood says that the conditions at the cattle pound are not hygienic. He laments that the number of stray cattle has increased to more than the capacity of the pound,due to which hygiene conditions cannot be maintained.
The civic body is also making preparations for sending the stray cattle to cattle sheds outside the city. With the cattle sheds around the city not willing to accept the animals,especially bulls,it is proposed to send them to Barsana. Trucks would be hired to transport the cattle to Barsana. Since the journey from Chandigarh to Barsana is a long one,a doctor and other staff would be sent with the cattle.
Officials on toes to contain menace
The campaign to tackle the menace of stray cattle launched by the municipal corporation (MC) is underway with around 10 cattle being impounded everyday,said Dilraaj Singh,Joint Commissioner,MC.
The campaign was launched a few days ago after Deputy Commissioner Tejinderpal Singh Sidhu instructed the officials of MC and Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA) on August 23 to take steps to control the rising number of road accidents due to vagrant animals.
There is a single vehicle being used for catching the cattle. But the cattle are being dispersed at a much faster rate because the owners,who generally leave them free for grazing,are now keeping them confined. This is because we are imposing heavy penalty on the owners of these cattle, said Dilraaj Singh,adding,very few of the cattle are actually stray and most of them are left to graze by their owners.
According to Singh,the corporation is imposing a fine of Rs 3,000 for an adult animal while it is Rs 1,500 for a calf. He also said that a cow shed is being constructed in Industrial Area Phase 1,which will house a total of 400 cattle. Its first segment will be completed in a month,he said.