Canine menace: Shipra Suncity AOA approaches DM for relocation of dogs
Ghaziabad: The Apartment Owners Association (AOA) of Shipra Suncity approached the district magistrate (DM) over the issue of dogs living in residential societies. A delegation of the AOA met him on Wednesday with a request to build a shelter for the dogs outside the society.
The AOA took the step after getting disappointed with the Ghaziabad Municipal Corporation (GMC) which failed to arrive at a concrete decision over the issue in its board meeting on Tuesday.
"We did it after seeing no decision forthcoming from the GMC to grant instant relief to the residents from the terror of dogs," said Swati Chauhan, vice-president of the AOA.
He said that the AOA had met the VC of Ghaziabad Development Authority (GDA) on the issue with a request to provide us a piece of land where the shelter homes could be built. But “the VC told us that she needs time to think over matter," she said.
According to Swati, there are as many as 100 dogs in phase 1 of the society. The sheer number of the dogs emboldens them to attack which is why dog attacks are frequent in the locality.
She said that the problem was so serious that the AOA had to employ a woman to rescue the residents from the dogs in a location most prone to dog aggression.
"We have employed a woman in lane no 2, the place where the man-dog conflict is most pronounced. We employed this woman three months ago as she is adept at restraining the dogs from attacking the residents as they listen to her.
“The rising population and frequent attacks of the dogs in the society are jeopardizing the lives of the residents," Swati told to CitySpidey.
However, what the AOA is requesting to the district administration goes completely against the guidelines laid down by the Animal Welfare Board (AWB) and is tantamount to contempt of the Supreme Court.
The AWB guidelines, which was upheld by the apex court in its 2016 order, prohibits relocation of dogs from their natural territory (place where they are living).
Swati acknowledged the legal complications yet persisted that relocation is the only practical approach to tackle this situation. "One needs to think out of the box to resolve this issue. The government must understand that human lives are no less important than that of animals. I'm all for the welfare of animals, but I can't let safety of residents compromised.
She justified the decision saying, “I'm suggesting a way that can ensure both, the safety of the resident and welfare of the dogs."
However, her argument is untenable as the dogs can’t be relocated simply because they happened to be territorial animals and changing their territory would prove detrimental to their lives. This was the prime reason behind the prohibition of the relocation of dogs by the AWB.
Countering this argument, Swati said that dogs mark their territory because of food. Residents can still feed them in their shelter homes. Thus, lives of dogs will not be harmed.
Swati informed that the AOA is doing its bit to protect dogs as well. "We have given contract for their sterilisation and vaccination to an NGO. Till date, nine of the dogs have been vaccinated and sterilised," she said.