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Friday, February 26, 2021

Civic bodies make fresh attempt to check stray cattle

Around 80% of all strays are bulls and remaining are old or sick cows that dairy owners abandon after they stop giving milk. Less than 2% of them are milch cows, say shelter owners.

Written by Abhinav Rajput | New Delhi |
February 18, 2021 1:58:47 am
North Delhi Municipal Corporation, NDMC, stray cattle, stray cattle check in delhi, indian express newsSeveral accidents have occurred due to stray cattle on the roads. (File)

Three out of four cattle shelters full to capacity, lack of means to identify owners of cattle abandoned on roads, and unchecked entry of cattle from neighbouring states despite deportation of one lakh cattle by municipal corporations from the capital’s urban areas in the last 15 years — these were among the reasons red flagged in a report prepared by the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NDMC) for stray cattle menace in Delhi.

The report also said that in the absence of a database, each time there is an accident, the owners of the cattle could never be traced to fix the onus for payment of compensation. Several incidents of deaths of bikers have been reported in the last few years due to collision with cattle left wandering on the road.

“Lack of…evidence to establish the ownership of dangerous cattle which are deliberately let loose on roads help these owners dodge onus in the event of fatal human collision. It ultimately leads to civic authorities settling compensation claims,” it said.

Around 80% of all strays are bulls and remaining are old or sick cows that dairy owners abandon after they stop giving milk. Less than 2% of them are milch cows, say shelter owners.

The report also said that three out of the four cattle shelters in the city are full and the remaining one is mostly nearing full capacity.

Suggesting a solution, the report said, “Gone are the days of endless futile chase of the tails (cattle), now it’s time to nab the heads (owners).”

Leader of the house in North MCD Yogesh Verma said they would implant a chip in the animals. “The chip would be fed with a code that will help get the information of the cattle’s owner and help officials identify them and fix responsibility or impose penalties,” he said.

The MCDs along with the animal husbandry department of Delhi also plan to make a database and make it compulsory to update ownership details in case of sale of the cattle.

A 188-acre plot near north Delhi’s Narela was allotted by the erstwhile unified MCD to develop a separate cattle products hub. The corporation had provided 2,082 plots in 2004, saying dairy farms would be shifted in a phased manner. So far, physical possession of just 597 plots have taken place, the report said.

Majority of dairy farmers refuse to relocate, citing inadequate facilities. The MCD plans to make a fresh push in this direction.

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