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SC agrees to examine plea against mass culling of stray dogs

SC agrees to examine plea against mass culling of stray dogs
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The Supreme Court has agreed to examine a plea that is looking for contempt action against the chief officer of a municipal council in Karnataka and a ...

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court has agreed to examine a plea that is looking for contempt action against the chief officer of a municipal council in Karnataka and a private contractor based on the allegations of mass culling of stray dogs. A bench of Justices N V Ramana and M M Shantanagoudar had issued a notice to the Wilson VT, Chief officer of Municipal Council of Sakleshpur town, and the contractor V George Robert and had sought their response in four weeks.

Advocate Siddharth Garg, who had appeared for the petitioner animal rights activist Neveena Kamath, said that the contempt proceedings should be initiated against the two respondents for willfully disobeying the specific directions of the apex court.

He said that on November 18, 2015, the apex court had directed that all the local authorities and the panchayats should strictly follow the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PCA) Act, 1960 and the Animal Birth Control (ABC) Rules, 2001 and that no "subterfuge or innovative methods" to circumvent the order of the court will be tolerated.

Garg said that the PCA Act 1960 and the ABC Rules, 2001 prohibit any wanton who is responsible for catching and relocation of the stray dogs and only to allow the catching for the purpose of sterilisation and relocation back to the same place, where the stray dogs have been picked up.

According to the petition, Wilson had been given the contract to George to catch and then relocate stray dogs within his municipality. George was paid Rs 91,537 for catching and relocating 350 stray dogs.

"It must be made clear that the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 and the ABC Rules, 2001 only allow catching then sterilising, vaccinating and then relocation at the very same place. They do not allow any such catching and dislocating," the plea said.

It said that the respondents who have "deliberately and willfully" violated the orders of this court, shall face contempt proceedings which will be initiated against them.

"If such violations are not dealt, swiftly and sternly, by this Court then it will send a very wrong message to society that the orders of the apex court can be trifled with and there are no consequences for even the most open and egregious defiance. The actions of the Respondents are making a mockery of the majesty of this Court and invite the wrath of this Court to its fullest extent," the plea said.

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