‘Shift kabootar khanas to isolated places’

After a flock of pigeons from kabootar khana at Grant Road caused a motorist to lose control over his vehicle and fall to death

Written by Express News Service | Mumbai | Published: July 31, 2013 1:24:32 am

After a flock of pigeons from kabootar khana at Grant Road caused a motorist to lose control over his vehicle and fall to death,lone citizens’ corporator Makrand Narvekar of A ward has proposed that pigeons in the city be moved to isolated spaces. The victim,a BMC engineer with the disaster management control room,fell off his vehicle on June 30 after a pigeon reportedly hit his face. He died on July 11.

The proposal will be submitted on August 8,when the House convenes,Narvekar said. “These kabootar khanas were set up during the British era,when the roads saw far less activity. However,at present,they are seen as a menace. They also cause respiratory disease such as asthma,” Narvekar added.

Anandini Thakoor of Khar Resident Association said,“It is a welcome proposal. If it is passed,then it will be a major relief for people in my neighborhood.” Khar West Rail Station overlooks a kabootar khana,which Khar residents claim is home to hawkers,who hound passersby to buy grains from them to feed pigeons.

Mohammad Memon,corporator of C ward (Marine Lines,Kalbadevi),which is home to another kabootar khana,said,“Feeding pigeons is a religious activity of our Jain brothers. The pigeons have been here for centuries and I don’t think they can be moved.”

The city is home to around 10 kabootar khanas located at various parts like Fort,Dadar and Khar. Most of them are situated at crowded place like sidewalks,road junctions and traffic signals.

While the proposal to move pigeons has many takers,religious sentiments inhibit authorities from taking direct action. “The problem has existed for decades and there has been nothing we could do to remove the birds. Most of my neighbours are Jains and they won’t allow the move,” a Khar resident said.

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