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Panchkula: Dog bite cases spike, NGO says not enough infra to neuter strays

🔴 The numbers in the past several years have seen an uptick reporting a consistent growth.

By: Express News Service | Panchkula |
December 3, 2021 5:26:08 am
The number rose from 2,800 in 2018, to 3,500 in 2019, to 5,000 in 2020 and continues to grow. (Representational)

CASES OF stray dog bites in the district have risen more than two times in the past three years, as per the records made available by the health authorities. While a total of 2,800 cases were reported in the year 2018, as many as 4,800 were reported in Panchkula by the end at October this year.

The numbers in the past several years have seen an uptick reporting a consistent growth. Residents of several sectors have been attempting to take up the matter with MC authorities but have been given a deaf ear. The number rose from 2,800 in 2018, to 3,500 in 2019, to 5,000 in 2020 and continues to grow. Several letters written to the MC as well as the DC office have heaved no response from the authorities.

The rise has been witnessed despite the engagement of a neutering NGO, Bezubaan by the MC Panchkula which parted ways with the MC this October end.

A dog pound, constructed at the Sukhdarshanpur, which was promised to be a solution for the prevalent stray dog menace, at a cost of Rs 3 crore, never became functional as it broke the laws of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act.

“The dog care center in Sukhdarshanpur, inaugurated by the Speaker of the assembly with great passion, now stands useless. He should have first found out if what he was doing was even legal. He has wasted the public money with no solution to the issue in near sight,” said Bharat Hiteshi, a resident of Sector 10.
While the district used to record 350 cases per month on an average in the year 2020, it has reported over 470 each month this year.

Meanwhile the NGO, Bezubaan, which was first engaged by the district MC in the year 2019, for a year long term had been given another extension which became valid in the April, 2021. As per a source at the NGO, they shut operations in October this year due to lack of infrastructure.

A source said, “We had worked out of Sector 3 during our first term. During the second, the MC allotted as a
location at Sukhdarshanpur but poor hygienic conditions, lack of equipment and their unwillingness to cooperate drove us to break off the contract.”

The NGO had neutered as many as 6,000 dogs in their first tenure but could only neuter some 200 dogs in the six months of their second tenure.

The MC, however, has failed to even open tenders for the neutering process again. The Sukhdarshanpur shed had been touted to be a solution to address the stray dog and cattle situation of Panchkula by housing at least 850 strays along with 150 pet dogs.

“The grim numbers indicate malice and raise questions on the MC as well as the MLA who have time and again promised a stray free city in their next term,” said BM Kaushik, resident of Sector 25 of Panchkula.

“Will the municipal administration officials give an explanation that this dog center, built at a cost of crores of rupees, does not even have a proper toilet facility for the staff. Moreover, there is no arrangement for the removal of feces and urine of dogs,” he added.

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